Shake-up in Elmwood Park Voice Party as Village Board petition deadline looms
The names of Anthony "Tony" Del Santo and Philip Macantelli were recently removed from the window at the Elmwood Park Voice Party headquarters. The two are no longer a part of the party slate. | Photo by David Pollard~Staff reporter
Updated: January 14, 2013 6:47AM
ELMWOOD PARK — With Christmas Eve marking the last day to file to be on the April ballot, one slate for the Elmwood Park Village Board will have to gather petitions all over again.
Since July, the Elmwood Park Voice Party slate made it known it would seek election on April 9, running against the Village Unity Party of Elmwood Park, which is made up primarily of incumbents on the Village Board.
But over the past two weeks things have changed.
The Voice Party originally consisted of Joe Ponzio running for village president, Diane Marchetti for village clerk, and Elvis Hernandez, Anthony “Tony” Del Santo and Philip Marcantelli vying for three trustee seats.
On Dec. 8, however, Ponzio reported that Marcantelli and Del Santo previously informed him that they were no longer running on Voice Party slate.
“Tony and Phil have chosen to leave the Voice Party,” Ponzio said.
Marcantelli confirmed Dec. 8 that he left the party because he wanted to mend fences with the Unity Party, which is headed by Elmwood Park Village President Peter Silvestri, who is seeking re-election. Marcantelli, one of the founders of the Unity Party, and his running mates made their presence known in the community and at village board meetings.
“They Voice Party, which was formed by myself and Anthony Del Santo, has come up with a compromise to bring both parties together, the Unity Party and Voice Party,” Marcantelli said. “To put a stop to the fighting in town and come together.”
He explained that the compromise would entail members of each party coming together as one.
“Both (parties) have decided to come together,” he said.
Elmwood Park Village President Peter Silvestri said the party unification is one of many rumors flying around about his slate, and it’s “all talk.”
“It’s nothing but speculation and gossip out there,” Silvestri said. “They’ll know who’s running for mayor when the filing ends. I’m not going to be part of the rumor mil.”
He said his slate is whole and none have left to go to another party. He said his slate and supporters remain out collecting signatures.
“There has been no defection,” Silvestri said. “The only defection is on the other side.”
Ponzio said that despite the loss of his party’s running mates, they’ve recruited two new candidates, but would not divulge who they are.
“The Elmwood Park Voice Party has five candidates and we’re circulating petitions and moving forward,” he said.
Del Santo and Marcantelli’s names were recently removed from the picture window at the Voice Party headquarters.
“Our platform has not changed,” Ponzio said. “The Voice Party is bigger than any one candidate. They (Marcantelli and Del Santo) made a decision that is best for the families and their future.”
Candidates who wish to be placed on the April 9 ballot must file their petitions between Dec. 17 and Dec. 24 with the Illinois State Board of Elections.