Birthdate: May 25, 1978
Birth Place: Springfield, MA, United States
Residence: Plymouth, MA
Religion: Catholicism
Gender: Male

Candidacy

Education

Chris Sheldon was born in Springfield, Mass., raised in Andover and now lives in Plymouth. He earned a bachelor's from Syracuse University and, in 2007, a master's in business administration from the University of Florida.

Sheldon earned the rank of Eagle Scout as a teenager and competed as a diver for Syracuse. After graduation, he worked as an equities and derivatives trader, before joining the sales and marketing department at a health care products company. He's now a management consultant in various industries, including health care, energy and manufacturing.

In his free time, Sheldon works on a 1985 Jeep he built from the frame up and is a volunteer high school swim team and diving coach.

He is single.

Profile

Chris Sheldon defeated Adam Chaprales in the Republican primary in Massachusetts' 9th Congressional District. He faces incumbent Democrat Rep. Bill Keating in his first run for elected office.

Sheldon said he's long been interested in politics, but his career has been spent entirely in the private sector, including his current work as a management consultant.

After he was laid off in 2009, Sheldon began independent consulting, which gave him time to volunteer for former state treasurer Joe Malone's unsuccessful 2010 bid for Congress. He eventually became the campaign's treasurer and director of field operations.

Sheldon said he's noticed a troubling emerging dynamic in politics that pits the private sector against the public sector, even though a robust private sector is crucial to economic recovery.

"It almost seemed like, 'What can we do to slow business down today?'" he said.

Sheldon thinks his perspective as a businessman is badly needed in a congressional delegation he describes as dominated by professional politicians.

If elected, Sheldon said he would vote against the 2010 health care reform law because it's too expensive and won't lower costs for either businesses or individuals.

He pushes for tax reform to increase revenues, eliminate loopholes and give companies more incentive to invest in the United States.

Sheldon also believes the country is hurting itself by failing to lower energy costs. He advocates bringing new nuclear power plants online, giving approval to the Keystone XL oil pipeline from Canada and fully exploiting the nation's natural gas reserves through fracking.

Sheldon said one of his top regional concerns is New England's struggling fishing fleet, which he said is facing devastating cuts due to federal mismanagement. If elected, Sheldon said he would push for fair rules and become known as the delegation's expert on fishery policy and science.

The Plymouth resident said he's undaunted by Massachusetts' heavily Democratic makeup. Sheldon noted Keating is just finishing his first term, and the shape of the district has changed since the last election. In addition, Sheldon said the district _ stretching along the coast for Cape Cod and Islands to New Bedford _ hosts a disproportionate share of the state's elected Republicans.

Keating has taken numerous positions Sheldon believes defy prevailing local opinion, including support of the new health care law, his support for the Cape Wind offshore wind project and his failure to push for a balanced federal budget.

Sheldon said he can win the election because Keating is not entrenched and not in tune with the district.

Source: Associated Press

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