Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Bob Robinson declares candidacy for commissioner

After much speculation (and some actual written reports), former Daily Advocate editor Bob Robinson has formally declared his candidacy for Darke County Commissioner. Robinson provided these exclusive comments to DarkeJournal ...

I arrived in Darke County a little over seven years ago and, though some may disagree, believe I served it well as the editor of the Daily Advocate.

I wasn't ready to retire from community service, but felt it was time to turn the editorial reins over to someone better prepared to handle the dual worlds of print and Internet journalism.

Publisher David Compton agreed... as many of you know, Christina Chalmers has been named the new editor. I know she will do an excellent job.

My role? I didn't have much time to think about it... I got a call the next day and discovered there was a group of individuals who believed I could still serve the community by seeking the Commissioner's seat when Terry (Haworth) retired.

After considerable thought and discussion, I decided that I agreed. I guess you know the rest. If you want to know what I stand for, all you have to do is review my columns for the past several years.
Robinson's formal public announcement will be Wednesday, high noon at the Darke County Courthouse.

UPDATE: here are the comments from Robinson's courthouse speech, graciously forwarded from the campaign:

Thank you, each of you, for taking time out of your day to be here.

I would like to introduce my wife Susan, step-son Shawn Enicks, my nephew Chad Enicks; my campaign chair Kay Seiler, and treasurer Al Greiner; a key advisor on my committee, Lyn Bliss, and other committee members; our web master David Barger...also my teen leaders Kayla Lamar and Danny Pence, and many community members.

And somebody many of you already know — someone I have admired, both personally and as an elected official — someone I feel privileged to call a friend — your former State Representative — the lady who served many of you in Columbus so well foreight years — Diana Fessler.

Welcome, all of you.

During the time I was editor at The Daily Advocate, I grew to love Darke County andthe people in it. You are a solid agricultural community, with traditional, down-to-earth values. You have great work ethics, and I believe that most — if not all — of you would rather depend on your own efforts than those of government, large or small, for your success and well-being.

That’s why I’m here. I expressed those views in my opinion columns for seven years, and I hold those views today.

After retiring from The Advocate, it didn’t take me long to realize that helping promote business by doing public relations and marketing wasn’t the future some had in mind for me.

Or, I guess, that I had in mind for me.

The morning after I left The Advocate I received a phone call.., it seems that a few people thought I should run for Darke County Commissioner in 2010.

I gave it a lot of thought. Many of you know bow I feel about politics... I’ve expressed openly that I don’t like the way the game is played.

Still don’t. However... I had to ask myself, how else can I continue to serve?

I discussed it with Susan and Shawn... and a number of community leaders. As are sult of those discussions, I have chosen to run for the commissioner’s seat that Terry Haworth will be vacating when he retires next year. I WANT to continue to serve the people of Darke County.

So, today I’m asking for your help.

If you agree with me that you would rather see more jobs and an expanded tax base, rather than higher taxes because fewer of us are paying them... I need your help.

I strongly support expanding our economy and job market through local businesses, as well as making life easier for new businesses wishing to start or relocate here.

If you agree with me that government should be subject to the same financial restrictions in a tight economy that the rest of us are... I need your help.

I’ve been a government “watchdog” in Darke County for the past seven years... my approach would be no different as your commissioner.

And if you agree with me that government should be more accessible to you... our employers... I need your help.

I intend to establish weekly office hours, and if you can’t come to me, I’ll come toyou. I will be holding regular weekly meetings at various locations throughout Darke County... this will begin in a few weeks, and if you choose to elect me, it will continue after I am in office.

Those are the issues I intend to run on. If you agree with me, I need your help, your support and your input. Government — especially local government — after all, belongs to the people... not to those you have chosen to represent you.

I don’t want to keep you and I’ve said pretty much what I’ve asked you to come to hear.

I have petitions that need to be signed. I need signatures of 50 qualified voters, but as most of you know, we need at least 4 or 5 times that many signatures to assure that the required number will be met.

I need volunteers.., this will be a massive undertaking for someone who has absolutely no political experience. I’ll need all the help I can get. Please sign up and leave your phone number and/or email address. We need YOU!

Finally, every campaign costs money. If you feel you are able, we would appreciate a contribution.

I will take some questions if you have any...

Again, thank you for coming and I hope you will support me as I prepare to run for Darke County Commissioner in the May 2010 primary.., and with your help, the November 2010 general election.

** Robinson also later jokingly commented, "I have no idea what I'm doing." But he'll learn not to say such things on the campaign trail!


  1. I don't think Bob Robinson would be a good commissioner. That's my opinion. What's yours?

  2. Tradtionally, Darke County has needed farm and farm based business people for commissioners. What qualifies Mr. Robinson for the job?

    Besides the last time his campaign committee lined up behind a candidate for local office, they lost big time. Are they bad luck?

  3. Who says a commissioners needs to be part of a farm based business? Maybe we could use some people who aren't part of this demographic for a change.

  4. I don't think a commisioner has to be a part of a farm based business, but needs to have a strong business background and great social skills. Remember, not only do they make decisions about millions of dollars, they are some of the people that new businesses meet with when deciding whether of not to come to Darke County. We need someone dynamic. I'm not sure Mr. Robinson fits the bill.

  5. You're all wrong. Robinson would be a great commissioner.

  6. Journalists are notorious for seeing the world through rose colored glasses.They have a simplistic way of viewing the world -- black or white. They believe that things can be accomplished easily, through common sense. Wrong. Bob will likely be frustrated and discouraged in the world of politics. Good people with good intentions often get frustrated when the good they want to see done is slowed by political machines. In many instances, those with talent and expertise throw in the towel to move on to things they can have a positive impact on. Time will tell.

  7. There is already a movement to convince a younger Republican to run for the commissioner's seat. Darke County needs some new blood to start leading the charge, much like the Republican Party is in need of the younger generation to recreate the party.


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