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Martha Robertson

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Martha Robertson
Martha Robertson.jpg
Former candidate for
U.S. House, New York, District 23
Elections and appointments
Last electionNovember 4, 2014
Term limitsN/A
Prior offices
Tompkins County Legislature
Bachelor'sCornell University
Campaign website
Martha Robertson campaign logo
Martha Robertson was a 2014 Democratic and Working Families Party candidate seeking election to the U.S. House to represent the 23rd Congressional District of New York.[1] She ran unopposed for both nominations in the primary on June 24, 2014.[2] Robertson was defeated by incumbent Rep. Tom Reed (R) in the general election.


Robertson grew up working with her parents in their small business, Liberty Nursery. She then attended Cornell University and eventually moved to Cleveland, where she helped to start the Cleveland Children's Museum. In 2002, after moving back to New York, Robertson became a member of the Tompkins County Legislature, and was a chair for the group from 2010 to 2013.[3]


  • Studied Early Childhood Education at Cornell University[3]


Affordable Care Act

Robertson had in the past been a supporter of a single-payer healthcare system, in which the government is the sole supplier.[4]

Burger King

Robertson called Burger King's decision to acquire Canadian chain Tim Horton's "unpatriotic." It was been reported that Robertson and her husband own mutual funds consisting of 800,000 stocks in Burger King.[5]

Campaign themes


Robertson listed the following themes on her campaign website:[6]

  • Invest in the Middle Class: "I’m running for Congress to help break the gridlock that’s prevented America from building a stronger economy that benefits everyone. Government can’t do it alone; we must forge public/private partnerships and bipartisan alliances to address the top issues facing us: creating high-quality jobs, prioritizing education, and protecting Medicare and Social Security."
  • Jobs & Economic Development: "Martha understands that a vibrant job market is critical to all aspects of community development. That's easy to say, hard to do, but her record as a job creator proves she knows how!
    Before entering the public arena Martha started her own business, working in museum exhibit design and construction. She knows what it is like to build a business from the ground up, find customers, and meet a payroll. She will fight to keep these opportunities alive for today’s small business owners and create an environment that encourages tomorrow’s entrepreneurs as well."
  • Clean Energy and the Environment: "Martha knows that our region will be best served by strengthening our existing economic drivers including agriculture, tourism, and small businesses. She believes that we can harness our own power while creating permanent, local jobs through innovative renewable energy, efficiency, and clean tech investments and development."
  • Education for Our Future: "To Martha, a former kindergarten teacher, education is a personal mission. To this day she still believes the old saying that everything we need to know to succeed in life (and certainly in politics), we learn in kindergarten. She knows firsthand the importance of providing both teachers and students the tools they need to succeed in their respective roles."
  • Fairness and Opportunity: "Martha has wrestled with county budgets for 12 years on the Tompkins County Legislature. In most of those years the budget passed with bipartisan support, following a deliberative process involving all legislators, all department heads, and the public."
  • Our Seniors: "Martha understands that the prosperity of our community depends on the well-being of all our citizens. The elderly on fixed incomes are feeling uneasy these days as some in Congress propose to put Social Security on the chopping block. Our seniors’ livelihoods should not be subject to the vagaries of the financial markets.
    Martha will continue to fight to protect Social Security against efforts to privatize it, which would have been devastating in the recent recession."


—Martha Robertson, Campaign website (archive)



See also: New York's 23rd Congressional District elections, 2014

The 23rd Congressional District of New York held an election for the U.S. House of Representatives on November 4, 2014. Incumbent Tom Reed (R) defeated Martha Robertson (D) in the November general election.

Reed ran on the Republican, Conservative and Independence Party tickets, while Robertson ran on the Democratic and Working Families Party tickets. Neither Reed nor Robertson faced competitors in the primary on June 24, 2014.

New York's 23rd was considered a battleground district in 2014. The district voted Republican in 2012, but by a small margin, with President Barack Obama (D) losing the district by 1.2 percent and Reed winning U.S. House race by a mere 3.6 percent margin of victory.

U.S. House, New York District 23 General Election, 2014
Party Candidate Vote % Votes
     Republican Green check mark transparent.pngTom Reed Incumbent 57.8% 113,130
     Democratic Martha Robertson 35.9% 70,242
     N/A Blank/Void/Scattering 6.4% 12,502
Total Votes 195,874
Source: New York State Board of Elections

Jumpstart program

Robertson was a member of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee's Jumpstart program, which is designed to provide early support to top-tier Democratic challengers.[8]


Robertson was endorsed by the following:


In October 2013, Robertson released an introductory campaign ad, describing her background and her position on key issues.[12]

Robertson 2014 campaign ad

Campaign donors


Candidates for Congress were required to file up to seven main reports with the Federal Election Commission during the 2014 elections season. Below are Robertson's reports.[13]

Martha Robertson (2014) Campaign Finance Reports
ReportDate FiledBeginning BalanceTotal Contributions
for Reporting Period
ExpendituresCash on Hand
July Quarterly[14]July 15, 2013$0.00$278,049.34$(30,105.48)$247,943.86
October Quarterly[15]October 15, 2013$247,943.86$175,278.16$(47,894.72)$375,327.30
Year-End[16]January 31, 2014$375,327.30$273,623.70$(89,279.64)$559,671.36
April Quarterly[17]April 15, 2014$559,671.36$330,366.06$(76,526.64)$813,510.78
Running totals


Robertson has two grown children, a transportation planner named Jessica and an emergency physician named Adam. Adam and his wife have two children.[3]

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See also

External links

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  1., "Tompkins County Chairperson Martha Robertson running for Congress," accessed April 2013
  2. Associated Press, "New York - Summary Vote Results," accessed June 24, 2014
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 Martha Robertson for Congress, "About Martha," accessed May 20, 2014
  4. Buffalo News, "Reed now taking ‘special treatment’ health care that he had opposed," December 25, 2013
  5. My Twin Tiers, "Robertson Slams Burger King, Answers Questions on Personal Finances," August 27, 2014
  6. Martha Robertson for Congress, "Priorities," accessed May 19, 2014
  7. Note: This text is quoted verbatim from the original source. Any inconsistencies are attributed to the original source.
  8. The Washington Post, "DCCC adds nine names to program for top recruits," September 9, 2013
  9. EMILY's List, "EMILY’s List endorses Martha Robertson for Congress," accessed May 19, 2014
  10. SNAP PAC, "SNAP PAC Endorses Martha Robertson in New York’s 23rd Congressional District," accessed May 19, 2014
  11. J Street PAC, "All Endorsed Candidates," accessed May 19, 2014
  12. YouTube, "Meet Martha Robertson," accessed May 19, 2014
  13. Federal Election Commission, "Martha Robertson Summary Report," accessed April 28, 2014
  14. Federal Election Commission, "Martha Robertson July Quarterly," accessed April 28, 2014
  15. Federal Election Commission, "Martha Robertson October Quarterly," accessed April 28, 2014
  16. Federal Election Commission, "Martha Robertson Year-End," accessed April 28, 2014
  17. Federal Election Commission, "Martha Robertson April Quarterly," accessed April 28, 2014