Credit: Darrow Montgomery

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For a longtime political hopeful, Jacque Patterson has had a lot of trouble getting his name on a ballot. Patterson’s 2011 at-large bid fizzled after he failed to make the ballot, and today, the D.C. Board of Elections recommended that Patterson’s State Board of Education bid be kept off the ballot because of a lack of legitimate nominating signatures.

But don’t worry, Patterson-heads: He says he will still be running, no matter what DCBOE decides after the Thursday deadline to save his campaign. If former mayor Anthony Williams could get elected via write-in campaign, then why can’t Patterson?

“If I have to run a write-in, I’ll do a Tony Williams,” Patterson says.

LL didn’t have the heart to tell Patterson that Williams being re-elected as a write-in while also a popular mayor is much different from Patterson winning as a write-in for an obscure SBOE spot. But if Patterson wants to stay on the ballot and overcome the signature challenge from incumbent Mary Lord, he has to come up Thursday with roughly 120 petition-signers who have updated their voter registrations to accurate addresses.

“It’s a very desperate attempt by Ms. Lord to win,” says Patterson, who also plans to appeal Lord’s challenge separately.

There are no dirty tricks here, Lord says. She’s just following the rules.

“The ballot access process is very straightforward,” she says.

For Lord, potentially keeping Patterson below the 1,000 legitimate signature threshold means an easy path to re-election. If Patterson does make the ballot, Lord would have to face his significant fundraising advantage in November’s general election.