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How hard is it to count valid signatures of registered D.C. voters? Apparently, very hard.

The grassrooters known as D.C. Public Trust who want to ban corporations from giving directly to local political campaigns asked a judge today to give them an extra month to verify that they have enough signatures to put the issue to the voters. The request, which was granted, means there’s no chance the initiative will be on the November general election. If Public Trust can convince a judge that it does have the required 23,000 signatures, which the Board of Elections says they don’t, then the initiative would like be on the ballot in a spring special election to fill Council Chairman Phil Mendelson‘s former at-large seat (that’s assuming Mendo wins a special election in November to be chairman, which he almost certainly will).

Elissa Silverman, a spokeswoman for Public Trust, says the group needed more time because there is “a lack of clarity” about how the board counts valid signatures. The trust also says the 3,100 signatures from registered voters who gave addresses that didn’t match up with BOE’s records should count, as well.