> ROCCO POLIDORO
, 54, was a Republican for years, but said he
spent that time battling the "Springfield Republican machine" and had no qualms about switching to the Democratic Party a few months ago.
"I always believed in the two-party system, and we never had that in Delaware County," Polidoro
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The battle against the machine was of the uphill variety, and Polidoro
has lost four elections in the fight.He
has succeeded in raising Republican hackles along the way, though, and has drawn some colorful criticism from Springfield Republican heavyweight Charlie Sexton.Some of those comments came after Polidoro announced he had asked Democrat Joe Sestak, a former Navy admiral, to lead Springfield's Memorial Day parade last year while the Democrat was battling Republican Curt Weldon for the 7th Congressional District.Polidoro
, a proud thorn in the side of the Springfield GOP for years, was able to make the call because of his
position as commander of the Springfield American Legion
.The non-political group caused quite a stir when it announced the Democratic candidate would be the grand marshal of the parade. Polidoro founded the Springfield Independent Republican Team, or SPIRIT, to challenge Sexton's influence in the township.The group was not a success when it came to elections, and Polidoro registered as a Democrat a few months ago.He
has secured the top ballot spot and is running a campaign focused on over-spending by the county.
Comparing Delaware County to Montgomery and Bucks counties, Polidoro
can prove a ridiculous amount of overspending and cut the budget by $100 million.Polidoro
blames the Republican Party for handing out jobs and no-bid contracts to its friends and allies.He
will call for independent audits of the county, prohibit county employees from working in political jobs, eliminate no-bid contracts and adjust the high salaries of "over-paid department heads."Polidoro
also said he
will fight to preserve open space, something he
has personally battled for in his
own township for eight years.Polidoro previously ran as a write-in candidate for Springfield commissioner in 1999, and lost a bid for Springfield Republican committeeman in 2000.He lost a bid for the Republican state committee in 2002, and lost his second campaign for Springfield commissioner in 2003.
has been married for 34 years, has four children and two grandchildren.He earned an economics degree from Temple University.