4. Place ballots [in this box lid] where the oval is marked for Write-In category (colored in, X, Star, Check) and THE NAME WRITTEN APPEARS TO BE A VARIATION OR MISSPELLING OF MURKOWSKI OR LISA MURKOWSKI. Also place in this lid any ballot that an observer challenges so that the director can make a determination.There probably won't be enough ballots in Box Lid #4 to make a difference, but Tea Party Republican Joe Miller — he's the guy who handcuffs and "detains" reporters — insists that counting any ballot with even the slightest misspelling of Murkowski's name is unlawful.
And he's probably wrong about that, because Alaska's apparent statutory demand for electors to be perfect spellers is likely a too onerous and narrow requirement for a showing of "voter intent."
That a voter wrote Murkowsky or Merkowski instead of Murkowski shouldn't deny them a constitutional right and that right is certainly more compelling than a State requirement that all voters be spelling bee champions or else their otherwise lawful ballot is discarded.
Miller's claim — and what he claims the Alaska rule of law is — smacks of the voter literacy tests that plagued the pre-Civil Rights era.
But if there does happen to be a significant number of ballots in that category, we might count on Box Lid #4 to be 2010's hanging chad.