Frank Pinto calls the job of auditor general the most important one in state government next to that of governor.
That's a big reason he's running for the office in the Republican primary.
"I can do what's right," he said. "And maybe protect our money."
Pinto, 67, of Dauphin, calls himself a leader, not a bean counter.
The auditor general audits Pennsylvania's 501 public school districts and other educational agencies, state departments and facilities as well as municipal employee and police pensions, volunteer firefighters' relief and pension funds, district justices, certain county officials and many public and private agencies that receive state aid.
Pinto conceded that the elected position is involved with numbers, but there are plenty of accountants and CPAs who would be working for him in the auditor's general's office.
"This is the job. This is the opportunity," he said. "I wasn't interested in state treasurer."
Pinto's Republican opponent, John Maher, R-Allegheny, also is running unopposed for his state House seat.
Pinto said Maher should not be running for two positions at the same time.
If Maher were to win both races in November, it would lead to a costly special election in his House district with the party choosing the party's nominee, instead of voters.
Maher could not be reached for comment, but reportedly has made it clear previously that his constituents want him to run for both offices.
Pinto also criticized Maher for voting himself a pay raise in 2005.
But Maher reportedly has said he never accepted the raise.
Maher has been endorsed by Gov. Tom Corbett, but that's OK with Pinto, who claims he's beholden to no one.
Nor should he be, given the nature of the job of auditor general, he said.
Pinto thinks he's the Republican with the better chance of winning against a Democrat in the November election.
A former college professor and longtime leader of the Pennsylvania Association of Community Banks, Pinto said the auditor general's office is not all it can be to the people.
If elected, he'd consider how to better utilize office personnel with respect to their skills.
For example, how could they reach out to organizations being audited to help them run more efficiently? he asked.
Pinto said he stands for frugal government, and it's time Harrisburg operates that way.
"Everybody has to be a watchdog because it's everybody's money," he said.
State government must be run like a business and reject the "good old boy" network, business as usual politics.
"It's (auditor general) such a powerful position, if you use it correctly," he said.
Pinto said he's running without a big war chest.
"My weaknesses are struggling with money to elevate the debate," he said. "I'm going to win this (primary) people to people."
Pinto said he plans no expensive television advertising to get out his message, but will do radio.
In the meantime, he's criss-crossing the state and meeting plenty of voters.
On Wednesday, he hit a number of Northern Tier communities before reaching Williamsport in the afternoon.
He conceded that not many people know much about the office of auditor general or about the candidates seeking the position.
"It's the Rodney Dangerfield office," he cracked.
Due to term limits, Auditor Gen. Jack Wager, a Democrat, cannot run for re-election.
The lone Democrat running in the primary is Eugene DePasquale.