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Birthdate: Jan. 21, 1952
Birth Place: Flint, MI, United States
Residence: Cape Coral, FL
Jim Roach was born in Flint, Mich., and now resides in Cape Coral, Fla. He dropped out of high school and enrolled in the military, where he would up serving in the U.S. Army and fighting in Vietnam.
After his military service, Roach earned an associate degree in electronic engineering from Midlands Technical College. He spent time working for both General Motors and Carolina Power & Light.
Roach moved to Florida in 1998, initially settling in Sarasota before moving in 2002 to Cape Coral where he now resides.
Roach owns his own technology consulting company that has had contracts with the military in the past, although the company has not been very active in recent years.
His first bid for elective office was in 2010 when he unsuccessfully challenged incumbent U.S. Rep. Connie Mack.
Roach is married and has a daughter from a previous marriage.
Despite losing his first bid for Congress in 2010, Democrat Jim Roach decided to run again in one of the more Republican districts in the state of Florida.
He concedes it could be an uphill battle, but says he believes that once voters in the 19th District hear his viewpoints and thoughts about such contentious issues as health care reform they may consider him.
He contends that this election cycle is not the way it was in 2010 when voters handed control of the U.S. House back to Republicans.
"People were fed up with Democrats in 2010 because they thought it was our fault, this year it's different,'' said Roach, who lost two years ago to incumbent U.S. Rep. Connie Mack. Mack is not running for re-election to the House in 2012, but is seeking a seat in the U.S. Senate.
Roach faces Republican Trey Radel in the November general election.
A U.S. Army veteran who served in Vietnam, Roach spent most of his life working for companies such as General Motors before moving to Florida and starting his own company.
Even though Roach is in a GOP-performing district he has not dodged issues like the 2010 health care reform law backed by President Barack Obama. At the same time he insists that he is concerned about the federal budget deficit and that he is a "pro-business Democrat."
Roach says one of the reasons he supports health care reform is because it is projected to help reduce the deficit over the next decade.
Roach supports eliminating foreign military bases and closing what he calls tax loopholes to help with the deficit. He also supports raising the cap on the social security payroll tax in order to help extend the solvency of the social security trust fund.
He says he wants Southwest Florida to be a leader in "green energy" as part of a pathway to create more jobs in the region that was hit hard by the recession.
Roach also supported the bailouts for the auto industry and says that there is a need for environmental regulations despite criticism that such regulations could cost jobs.
Source: Associated Press
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