Congressional challenger Jack Uppal says priority should be fostering job growth in the country

By: Penne Usher, Telegraph Correspondent
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He came from India not knowing a word of English and in the years since has graduated with a Ph.D. in Chemistry from MIT and is now running for a seat in the House of Representatives Jack Uppal, 58, resides in Lincoln with Kate, his wife of 12 years who is also his campaign manager. “I’ve engineered new products, helped new businesses launch their technology, and overseen and implemented annual budgets of over a billion dollars,” Uppal said. He worked in the semiconductor industry as an engineer and a project and “people manager” for most of his career. After retiring in 2008, he and Kate moved to their second house in Lincoln and now call it home. With his wife’s encouragement, Uppal a self-described moderate Democrat, made the decision to throw his hat in the political ring. “I thought, ‘Well, I could do this,’” he said. “I’ve enjoyed retirement but last year when I saw all these things going on in Congress and nothing getting done, I decided it was time.” Uppal is running for the 4th District Congressional seat against Republican incumbent Tom McClintock. Creating jobs are on the top of his list of things to do to aid in economic recovery. ”Getting people back to work is the most important,” Uppal said. One of his ideas to meet that goal is to increase the lumber industry. “I would like to expand on those projects and allow for more lumber to be harvested,” he said. “We can do this in a way that can strengthen the forest, reduce the brush and harvest some lumber and make the forest healthier.” Uppal also said he would like to increase access to high-speed Internet to rural areas, like many in El Dorado County. “Access to high-speed internet is really important, especially for kids in the rural school districts,” he said. Uppal said he wants the promise of the American dream to be a reality for others as it has been for him and his family. “I see this dream diminishing as middle class families work harder and harder just to stay in the same place, or worse yet, slide into poverty,” he said. Kate Uppal believes her husband is the man for the job. “He’s amazing. I know what a great candidate he is and what a wonderful congressman he will make,” she said. “Our slogan is putting people first — it’s not just a slogan it’s Jacks’ moral compass.”