Democrat Jan Schneider gearing up once again for District 16 congressional race

Sarasota attorney also faced Vern Buchanan in two previous races for the U.S. House

Jan Schneider. Image from her website

Once again, Democrat Jan Schneider of Sarasota has launched a campaign for the District 16 congressional seat held by U.S. Rep. Vern Buchanan, a Longboat Key Republican.

Schneider last faced Buchanan during the 2016 General Election, when she won 42.9% of the 122,818 votes cast, according to Sarasota County Supervisor of Elections Office records.

During that campaign, Buchanan raised a total of $1,660,718.68, including $901,459.46 in individual contributions, Federal Election Commission (FEC) records show. Schneider brought in $43,994.65, the FEC data say, $41,714.05 of which came in the form of individual contributions. She added $2,180.60 to the total, the records note, and she loaned $26,878 to the campaign.

Buchanan is a member of the powerful House Ways and Means Committee. The oldest committee of Congress, it also is the chief tax-writing committee. On Jan. 10, he was named chair of the Ways and Means Tax Panel.

Along with Schneider, Democrats David M. Shapiro, a Siesta Key attorney, and Calen Dean Cristiani of Sarasota; Green Party candidate Eric Allen of Lakewood Ranch; and Robert Samuel Kaplan of Venice — who has listed no party affiliation — have filed for the race, Sarasota County Supervisor of Elections Office records show.

Schneider also faced Buchanan in 2008, when she entered the race with no party affiliation, according to the Sarasota County Supervisor of Elections Office records.

In 2006 — when Buchanan first won his seat — Schneider lost in the Democratic primary to former Sarasota Democratic Party Chair Christine Jennings. At that time, the race was for District 13.

Additionally, Schneider was a Democratic candidate for the District 13 seat in the 2004 General Election, when incumbent U.S. Rep. Katherine Harris won re-election. Schneider defeated Jennings in the Democratic primary in 2004, while Harris ran unopposed.

Schneider also won the Democratic primary for the District 13 seat in 2002. That year, Harris was elected to her first term.

Schneider launched her latest bid on Jan. 8, a news release noted.

A Yale Law School graduate, Schneider has been counsel in proceedings in venues ranging from the International Court of Justice and international arbitral tribunals to Florida federal and state courts, the release points out. Further, it points out that she has authored three books and “dozens of legal articles (primarily in the field of environmental law).”

U.S. Rep. Vern Buchanan. Image from Congress

Her latest work, the release continues, is Baby Boomer Law and Politics: A Federal Legislative Guide, which is expected to be published in May.

She holds a master’s degree in international relations and a certificate from the Russian Institute of Columbia University School of International and Public Affairs.

The release adds that Schneider has served on many national and local nonprofit boards, “worked for the United Nations Environment Programme, taught law and run a clinic providing pro bono legal services to residents of public housing.” Schneider’s website says she has been a member of the boards of the Council on Ocean Law, Protect Our Waters, the Lemon Bay Conservancy and Seniors for Pets, among others.

For further information, visit or Schneider’s campaign Facebook page at