Despite facing a field of challengers that has grown to seven, Barry, who will turn 76 in March, seems up for the challenge of representing the District’s poorest ward for a third term. In fact, a field that big only seems to help Barry — in 2008, he beat four challengers, while in 2004, he bested six. Next year, he faces two people he beat in 2004 — Sandra Seegars and Jacque Patterson — and one of his former spokespeople, Natalie Williams.

Next year’s election is certainly symbolic for Barry. It will mark 40 years since his first entrance into public service as a member of the District’s school board. For many, that’s many terms too many, and they’d like Barry to go quietly into retirement. (That’s not going to happen, of course.)

[Continue reading Martin Austermuhle’s post at]

Martin Austermuhle blogs at DCist . The Local Blog Network is a group of bloggers from around the D.C. region who have agreed to make regular contributions to All Opinions Are Local.