Trenton City Council candidates were back in court Tuesday squabbling over how the candidate is listed on the ballot, with Damian Malave claiming his opponent is using her maiden name in an attempt to get votes in the 67 percent Hispanic district.

Malave says his opponent’s legal name is Jenna L. Kettenburg and wants a judge to prevent her from appearing on the ballot as Jenna Figueroa Kettenburg in next week’s Trenton South Ward City Council runoff.

She appeared on the November ballot as Jenna Figueroa Kettenburg unopposed Malawe.

Jerry Dusty, Malave’s attorney, says the candidate never used the last name Figueroa.

“That’s not her real name,” Dusty told Mercer County Circuit Judge Robert Lugi. “It’s no coincidence that about 65% of the people and voters in the South District are Hispanic. And what a surprise. This is not her legal name. This is not on the birth certificate. This is not in the divorce certificate. It’s nowhere but what’s on the ballots now, apparently.”

According to Dusty, the candidate did not use Figueroa on her voter registration, mortgage or other legal documents.

“This is a fraud. That’s not her name, Dusty said. “Why doesn’t she use the name Superman?”

But Ted Machiag, Figueroa Kettenburg’s attorney, said the candidate has used Figueroa in the past.

“I think it’s almost a frivolous argument,” he said.

Machiag pointed out that other candidates were placed on the ballot under names other than legal ones in the past, including Jimmy Carter, Mitt Romney and Tom Malinowski. He also listed the names of US senators, governors and Supreme Court justices who served with both maiden and married names.

Dusty suggested Lugie move the South Ward runoff to January to give the court a chance to make a decision.

The judge asked for certification from Figueroa Ketenburg, and the reports are due tomorrow, but it is unlikely that Lugi will stop the Dec. 13 runoff vote. Mail-in ballots have been in since last week.

Lugi also rejected Malawi’s request to declare the runoff election invalid, saying there is evidence that Trenton has been holding it since 1990. Trenton voters approved a referendum that ended the runoff in 1982, but voted to reinstate it in 1987.

New Jersey is considering some precedents allowing women to use the name of their choice. From 1999 to 2012, a woman served as a New Jersey Superior Court judge under the name Virginia Long, although she is registered to vote as Virginia Long Weiner.

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