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Tuesday, December 28, 2021

Alaska Judge Says No Cheating! Republicans and Democrats Celebrate.

In a rare moment of political kumbaya, both the Alaska Democratic Party and the Alaska Republican Party have sued the state for what they consider to be electioneering that unfairly favors Lisa Murkowski, the Republican write-in candidate for Alaska’s senate seat.  She seeks to retain her seat running against Joe Miller the Republican candidate, and Scott McAdams the Democratic candidate, both of whom are on the ballot.

Superior Court Judge Frank Pfiffner ordered the Division of Elections to remove the handy dandy list of write-in candidates from polling places across the state. Up until this point, the Division of Elections has told poll workers to provide a printed list of the write-in candidates’ names to voters who asked, despite the fact that no list like this has ever existed or been handed out at the polling place before.   There were even irregularities reported in Homer where the list was actually posted inside the voting booths.

There were 17 votes placed in Homer while the lists were posted. Those votes have now been “sequestered” and are being held out of the regular vote count.

The state said it will appeal Pfiffner’s decision to the Alaska Supreme Court.

Both political parties said the lists, which have been distributed to polling places statewide, are a considerable change from the state’s previous write-in practices. It directly violated a state regulation that forbids allowing any information about write-in candidates at the polling place or within 200 feet of its entrance, the judge noted.

Pfiffner said that the division’s argument “rings hollow” in light of its past practices.

“If it were important ‘assistance’ for the division to provide voters with lists of write-in candidates, then the division has been asleep at the switch for the past 50 years. The division first developed the need for a write-in candidate list 12 days ago.”

Both Randy Ruedrich, Chair of the Republican Party (who survived an ouster attempt in 2008 spearheaded by his current candidate Joe Miller), and Patti Higgins Chair of the Democratic Party issued statements in support of the judge’s decision.

Lisa Murkowski’s camp, on the other hand, is not pleased.  Neither is the Alaska Federation of Natives whose corporations (in the form of the group “Alaskans Standing Together”) have funneled big bucks into their controversial endorsement of corporate-friendly Murkowski and support of her campaign.

A phone call placed to Julie Husmann, the Election Supervisor for Region 2 (Districts 13-32) there have already been 6499 votes cast statewide in the early voting process to date.  Husmann stated that she didn’t know if these votes would also be sequestered after the judge’s ruling today, and that there had not been any discussions about it yet.



128 Responses to “Alaska Judge Says No Cheating! Republicans and Democrats Celebrate.”
  1. IreneNY says:

    Wow! McAdams – seems like an honest and principled man. Two months ago I sent in a contribution to his campaign and it’s so great to see what is happening in Alaska. I love reading these comments – you people are so honest in seeing what’s going on. You’re an example to the rest of the states. Shows you that it’s not over until it’s over.

  2. beth says:

    IMHO, there is going to *have* to be a re-do of the election for Senator…I’ve said it before, and I’m sayin’ it again: The DoE and poll workers absolutely compromised the process for electing a Senator by ignoring their own clear-cut, unambiguous rules.

    By playing fast and loose with the rules for [early] on-site voting –*their* rules– they put the results of ALL votes cast for Senator into a no-win situation; there is *no way!* to determine if the lists:
    1) merely ‘assisted’ voters in spelling Murkowski’s name, OR
    2) if they electioneered/steered/intimidated voters *away* from making a McAdams a Miller vote.

    If this race for Senate is going to be as close as it’s predicted to be, e..v..e..r..y…s..i..n..g..l..e vote has tremendous importance.

    There is no way they can toss out Murkowski write-ins because they’ve no idea if the writer-inner used one of the ‘supplied’ lists, or not [they might have known how to –gasp– spell her name or brought the spelling with them]; all those who voted, in good faith, for her, will be spitting mad. Also too, since she was/is a ‘legit’ contender as a write-in –having filed the paperwork and all– chucking them all would be denying that she’d been ‘okay-ed’ to run. B..U..T if they *don’t* toss her write-in votes, they are condoning what they’ve done…condoning *their* breaking of the law/rules/regulations.

    So, seems to me, since *none* of the candidates had anything to do with this disaster (at least, not overtly), since this disaster sits firmly on the shoulders of the DoE and is entirely *their* doing, the ONLY thing that can happen is a nullification of the entire Senator election and a re-do announced and carried out.

    Yes, it’ll be a headache; yes, it’ll take time; yes; it’ll cost much money, but it is the only way to ensure:
    1) the DoE is following –to the letter– it’s own rules and regulations,
    2) no single candidate has an advantage –OR disadvantage– over another, and
    3) the vote of each eligible voter is cast for the candidate of *their* choice, and is counted as such.

    On the bright side, a redo will be a good thing…not only will it made damn sure things are all above board, but with the way Miller’s been having ‘things’ come out of the woodwork about his actions (dare I say, his lies?) in the recent past, he’s bound to have ticked off some of his former base and they’ll not vote for him again.

    Likewise for Lisa – folks’ll know it was because of her petulant insistence that she be Senator again, that got everyone into this mess and some of her former base will wake up to the fact that she’s only in it for herself, not for the State…and they’ll not vote for her again.

    Meanwhile, ol’ Scott McAdams will just keep on Scott McAdamsing [getting out, letting people meet and hear him, keeping out of the Miller-Murkowski divorce muck, conducting himself honorably and rationally, winning folks over with his ideas and views] and he’ll not only pick up votes, he’ll pick up MANY votes. As a bonus, when he sweeps into office, AKans will actually feel *good*, really good, about the person *they* –alone!– elected as Senator. beth.

  3. Doodlebug says:

    Anchorage daily news says the Supreme Court has cancelled the stay. Instead they say any ballot cast that asked for the list must be segregated.

    • dreamgirl says:

      Another reason to vote for Scott McAdams! Jeez, why vote for anyone else?!

      May the best candidate win: Scott McAdams.

    • Moose Pucky says:

      ADN is woefully bad on details. They STAYED the RESCIND.

      But actually they upheld the illegality of the original lists and mandated a different kind of list.

      Sure all the poll workers had that figured out by today (Thursday).

      Chaos. Legal chaos. Election chaos. Especially for Lisa Digginindeeperski

  4. dreamgirl says:

    Just vote Scott McAdams! He is over-qualified. (No problemo) End story.

    Scott McAdams FTW! (McWin!!!!!!!)

  5. Moose Pucky says:

    If I were an election worker now, I’d be highly stressed. Do I throw out these lists? Do I take a magic marker and cross out all the extra information that’s not supposed to be on them? Do I wait for DOE to send new lists? Should I prepare my own list?

    And whatever I do, is it going to be wrong and disenfranchise the voters?

    All was so much better (for process) with the earlier ruling. Perfectly clear.

    As it stands now, there is going to be no consistency across the polls in Alaska. Impossible. And that’s not fair and that’s not legal.

    This is such a distraction for folks who might want to actually get to know the candidates better.

    Keep us all on task, Scottie. The best and most secure vote is the one for you.

  6. Simple Mind says:

    As I recall (it was a long, long time ago) a Petition for Review is simply that – a request by one of the parties that the Supreme Court take a look at the matter. It does not include any argument or decision on the merits. If the Supremes grant the petition, there will be a briefing schedule set up, arguments scheduled and likely a long time until a decision is rendered, easily past the election. On the other hand, if the Supremes deny the petition, the lower court’s ruling stands as it was made. This is why the notice includes a request that the state Elections people tell the court if there would be a problem sequestering these votes all through the election and after. In other words, if the Supremes grant the petition and accept review of the decision, alot of write in votes, presumably Murkowski votes, will sit in a black box somewhere, uncounted, for a considerable time while the parties fight it out.

    • Alaska Pi says:

      Clear and concise- thank you.
      And full of what makes it all interesting to me…

      I had missed, until reading the order, that Ms Murkowski and AFN were on the respondents list..
      Wondering what they are thinking tonight?

      • Moose Pucky says:

        They are thinking they have more corporate money for legal fights than do the citizens and political parties of Alaska.

        • Alaska Pi says:

          Maybe so but the not-so-divine-ms-m also has an election to lose
          Will be interesting to see if she wants to chance losing votes which folks who want the Miller spectre gone from the horizon have been willing to give her though they are not so happy with her, herself…

        • LoveMydogs says:

          Yup, like I said on an earlier thread…..quite the “stimulus program” for the lawyers eh? I can just see Van flea rubbing his hands together and twirling his moustache. Isn’t Leasa’s lawyer from the same firm???? They must be rolling in the dough. Now why didn’t I go to law school???

          Vote for Scott. Because he is the best choice and (if that isn’t enough for you) because he is our only hope to have any representation at all in DC (how long did it take in Minn. last time?).

    • CO almost native says:

      If new write-in candidates register, will they have to provided updated candidate lists daily, to all polling places? Sheesh.

      • Moose Pucky says:

        Heck. Will they provide new lists (corrected) as to having no party affiliation as so ordered?

        Election poll workers are now in the unenviable position of disenfranchising voters no matter what they do. All is open to legal challenge.

        Damned if they do show the list (or the wrong list) (or in the wrong way) (or at the wrong time).
        Damned if they don’t.

        Sounds like a lawyer’s dream scenario.

  7. Moose Pucky says:

    Moose Pucky’s interpretation (but I’m only a moose pucky):

    ADN’s headlines were misleading (surprise, surprise).

    The court is saying that the original lists can’t be used (just as the Superior Court said), but new lists without party affiliation or other information (like what seat the write-in is running for) could be used. Got to wonder how fast those are going to be printed and distributed??

    And at that time, the judges will take new briefs under consideration and make another ruling. They promise expedience, but do not define a time.

    ADN–This is not exactly a reversal of the decision–more like a temporary stay upholding parts of the decision (the original list is illegal) and modifying it (new lists, modified as stated, can be shown until a further ruling comes down.)

    Suppose running a magic marker through the names of the positions and parties will work?? Or is DOE going to revise and print whole new lists?

    The good news I suppose for Miller and McAdams is this holds the door open for many more legal challenges to come, should that become necessary.

    Voting for McAdams will make this all unnecessary, I might point out. Because if he wins free and clear, the write-ins won’t even have to be counted.

  8. Moose Pucky says:

    Okay, here it is:

    Before Justices Fabe (she’s on the ballot this year), Winfea, Christen, and Stowers. Chief Justice Carpenei not participating):


    1. The tiral court’s October 27, 2010 temporary restraining order is STAYED pending further order of this court. However, the list of registered write-in candidates shall be limited to names only, and shall not include party affiliation or any other information.

    2. The Petition for Review , as supplemented, will be considered on an expedited basis. Responses to the Petition for Review, limited to 18 pages in length shall be filed with the Clerk of the Appellate Courts in Anchorage by 3 PM Thursday, October 28, 2010, by hand delivery, email, or facsimile.

    3. In the interim period prior to this court’s ruling on the underlying Petition for Review, all ballots cast by voters provided with the list of registered write-in candidates shall be marked or otherwise identified and segregated. Furthermore, the Division of Elections shall provide the court with any reasons why this process of identification and segregation of such ballots cannot continue throughout the course of the election should the Petition for Review be granted, this notice shall also be filed by 3pm Thursday, October 28, 2010, by hand deliver, email, or facsimile.

    Signed by Clerk of the Appellate Courts–Marilyn May

  9. The AK Supremes basically voted to “stay the stay.” In other words, they will allow the list to be used until they have had an opportunity to make a final decision on the petition…whether or not the list can be used at all. This way, they do not have 3 classes of vote–those cast with the list (before the Superior Court ruling), those cast without the list and those cast after their decision. This way, they can just segregate all of the votes made before their decision.

    Besides all of the other previously-mentioned reasons, Alaska election law allows write-in candidates to register up until 5 days before the General Election (not 5 days before early voting), I don’t see HOW the final decision could allow an incomplete list to be used during early voting.

    • Alaska Pi says:

      thank you,Linda!
      yes on all counts…
      and hearing tomorrow!

    • dreamgirl says:

      Thanks Linda.

      DOE, do what’s right. America and other countries are watching you. Parnell, you and your minions especially. (flying monkeys almost goes without saying..).

    • Moose Pucky says:

      My interpretation of the ruling is they can’t use the original lists because the original lists spelled out party affiliation and other info (which seat the candidate was running for).

      So a factual headline might read. Supreme Court agrees with the Superior Court and will rule further. In the meantime…this, and only this, is what can be done.

    • Baker's Dozen says:

      I suggest that all AK mudpups and everyone else they can get their hands on register as a write in candidate. Make the list as long as Santa’s! Make them reprint it and get it to polling places every-single-day. Make it impossible to find the name you want.

  10. Bretta says:

    There’s a guy on ADN who just said:
    Here’s what this ruling really means from a pragmatic standpoint:

    “As I stated earlier, this now sets up a challenge to the 14th Amendment of the US Constitution. The equal protection clause can now be invoked due to the presence of absentee ballots, and their inability to access these ‘lists’ in the same fashion as ‘in presence’ voters.

    All of the write in ballots will be now be segregated and be subject to validity challenge all the way to the US Supreme Court.

    This means that the only safe anti-Miller vote is now Scott McAdams.” “””

    Anyone care to interpret for me?

  11. Moose Pucky says:

    The Miller/fundamentalist contingent has it out to get rid of one of these judges–I bet they and a few others are going to be really fired up right now. It was so much better when this was settled.

  12. Moose Pucky says:

    Looks to me like it’s going to be an attorney welfare program for forever–at the expense of the citizens of Alaska.

  13. Moose Pucky says:

    It’s short and it isn’t over yet. I’ll type in the actual wording as soon as it is done printing.

  14. Moose Pucky says:

    Downloading the decision now. You can get it at the adn page linked in the comments above.

  15. Bretta says:

    This to me means that the Li$a Merchantski Mafia owns the Alaska Courts.
    I thought perhaps today Alaska could hold our head up against the Insanity; Sigh.

    • Alaska Pi says:

      No, no, no…
      Don’t give up!
      Expedited hearing tomorrow- this is just beginning!
      Our fights belong in the courts and , ballots, and writing law…
      We are not falling into insanity…
      We are making our system work
      We’re not done yet.
      Take a deep breath!

      • Bretta says:

        Thank you.
        I am taking your encouragement and ante-ing up in the Spirit of Martha Unalaska Yard Sign and as a Big FU to Lisa Merchant$ki for her behavior:

        and donating again, tonight, to SCOTT McADAMS.

        Anyone care to join me in the party of yes we can?

      • dreamgirl says:

        America is watching… Fight the good fight!

        Watching from Chicago, keep on keeping Mudpups around the world! (It’s not just Alsakan politicians playing fast and loose with citizen’s rights…)

        • Bretta says:

          IKNOWRIGHT? Did you just watch KO’s Special Commentary against the Tea Party Terrorists just now? – I mean, Reason to Make Sure We Vote Next Tuesday? I’ve lost my breath it was so intense just to keep up.

          “Inherit the Wind;” Fanaticism and Ignorance are Ever Busy and Need Feeding.”

          “We have the Power to Do More than that!”

          • dreamgirl says:

            I just found out where to vote early here in Chicago. BTW, this is new , voting early, just began after 2008 prez. elections. Not sure how many Chicagoans know that.

            We have the momentum in the voter-booths, the polls are only a reflection on the idiot pond sampled upon. The tea-peeps will have a RUDE awakening Nov. 3rd.

            Go Scott Mcadams and Pat Quinn in Chi-town!

  16. Of course Homer has votes cast while the list was posted. People would not believe what goes on there during elections.

  17. dreamgirl says:

    To those involved in the Alaskan DOE: Pull your Parnell-collectively-held-heads out of your Parnell-owned-arses! America is collectively watching y’all!

  18. LibertyLover says:

    If this is any indication of how difficult counting AK’s ballots this year, I wish you all luck.

  19. TX SMR says:

    My mother, who has lived in Alaska for about 50 years now, was on a rant tonight about Lisa. Sadly I cannot get my mother to read any political blogs, that may be a good thing, though…

    Anyway, she was furious about the flyers she’s been receiving from Lisa. The woman issues one really made her angry. As with most thinking women, she was thoroughly insulted. Does Lisa know so little about women, or does she have some insight re: Alaskan women and think (perhaps correctly, sad but true), that thinking women in Alaska are not the majority? There are far too many women in Alaska who are brow-beaten by their GOP husbands, I have known my fair share. I vividly recall talking to one of them when going door to door for Obama — this woman told me that she votes how her husband tells her to vote. This woman was my age, in her 40s, maybe a few years younger. Kids. Big house. Nice cars. Nice police cars showing up at their house in the night now & then as well. Alaska doesn’t have the highest domestic violence rate for nothing.

    So much beauty in Alaska, so much potential, so much slipping away in so many ways. The youth in AK are in for a difficult life — what will they do when the oil is going away and all that is left for them is the plethora of drugs, alcohol and violence.

    Much as I dislike living in Texas (the group-think here being similar to that of AK), I never miss Alaska. Never. 30+ years there, born & raised, more than half of my family still there, including my daughter at university, but I never miss it. Watching Rachel interview the crazies talking about gun control, black panthers and regurgitating fox brings it all home to me.

    By the way, I think cochie’s a troll of sorts. But it’s nice of everyone to treat cochie so kindly, and to turn their trolling into reasonable points of discussion. Mudflatters rule!

    • dreamgirl says:

      As far as I know, men are not allowed in the voting-booth withe their wives. Just tell her to vote her values. That’s what she owes herself. She doesn’t need to tell her abusive partner who she voted for. That is her vote… period

    • dreamgirl says:

      BTW, coochie is a Leasa-a troll and everyone is respectful to that tr0ll. The L. Mickeymouski dynasty are desperate if they are posting on Mudflats.

      Go Scott McAdams! More power to ya!

    • Bretta says:

      Hey – I’m one of those women brow-beaten by her GOP husband.

      I left him this year. He said I wasn’t good enough to have a house in my name.
      My quadriplegic mother came to live with me but he wouldn’t remodel the house to let her live with us “put her in a nursing home,” he said, so I bought us a house.

      Whadda ya know, I am good enough to buy my own house. He lied. He lied to me. In the manner of the GOP senate candidate so recently busted on so many fronts.

      But hey, Lisa Merchant$ki used to be a middle-of-the-road-er but not the last few years. When she voted lockstep with the Good Ole Boys who dumped her Grave’s-Diseased Ass (thyroid eyes the giveaway), I felt bad.

      Then she voted against the latest nominees to the Supreme Court so I want nothing to do with her.

      • dreamgirl says:

        Good for you. Apparently “He” wasn’t good enough for you.

        Rock on Bretta. You and Family are in my prayers! Keep on keeping.

      • fishingmamma says:

        Yeah – I’m gonna chime in here too. Good for you for having the courage to leave, Good for you for taking care of your mom, and especially good for you for daring to be happy. I have been there. I know how brave you must be to do what you are doing.

      • Baker's Dozen says:

        Well! He wasn’t good enough to tell you how to run your life, was he! Obviously you’re good enough to run your own life–and a lot better than he did! I’m sending you virtual balloons and early Halloween candy. He’s one witch you don’t need back in your life. Send him to Christine.

      • CO almost native says:

        ((Bretta)) you go girl!

    • AKSandhills says:

      Wow I’m glad I don’t know any of those people & I live in the valley. While I’m sure that nationwide you would find lots of women who vote lockstep with their husbands. Hey – I know a few guys who vote according to how their wives vote.
      It sounds like a tad too much over generalizing in your post. First of all I work with lots of young people who are hardworking, interested in furthering their education and are not on drugs. We also do not corner the market on the crazies. How else to explain the success of Sharon Angle, COD and Rand Paul.
      The Alaska you describe is certainly one I do not recognize.

  20. blue_in_AK says:

    They’re saying now that the Supreme Court stayed the injunction. This election WILL be decided in the courts, no doubt, unless Scott can pull off a clean victory.

  21. Lee H says:

    DAM!! The Supremes just lifted Judge Pfiffner’s injunction on the list. But they are required to sequester those voters who were provided the list.

  22. Treehugger says:

    Lisa voted against the last appropriation bill. She issued a statement saying she (and all Republicans) were “shut out” of the process. (I saw and herd her statement on channel 2 news.) A few weeks later she sent out a news letter that was all about the federal dollars coming to Alaska through the appropriation bill. Not once did she mention that she had been shut out of the process and we should thank Senator Begich for the money. It is interesting that for voting against the money for Alaska she has won the endorsmnet of the AFN, Anchorage Daily News and others. I decided then that I would not vote for a single Republican in this election. Scott McAdams and Eathan berkowitz make it a decision easy to live with.

  23. Simple Mind says:

    I am still at a loss to figure out what Parnell was thinking. This was not the action of some Murkowski mole in the election office. It was reported that the state even went so far as to seek the approval of the Federal government for this action (although they didn’t wait for the answer.) Clearly, the folks at the top knew what was happening. The pertinent state regulation states: “Information regarding a write-in candidate may not be discussed, exhibited, or provided at the polling place, or within 200 feet of any entrance to the polling place.” 6 AAC 25.070(b). How can providing a list of people who have filed an intent to run as write in candidates, before the time for such filing is complete, not be in violation of this regulation? Knowing, as they had to, that they were on very thin legal ground, why did they do it? Parnell is a Miller supporter. The really cynical view is that they knew it was illegal and hoped to have a bunch of Murkowski votes sequestered off in the resulting litigation. The more likely possibility is plain old gross incompetence.

    • Alaska Pi says:

      Am afraid plain-old-gross-incompetence sounds like the MOST likely…

    • Moose Pucky says:

      There is also the possibility that Parnell is sorry he endorsed Miller (officially) and now is really working for Murkowski.

      • Polly says:

        OK. We want Scott McAdams to win, for sure. Things could get rough. Who knows how this will turn out.

        But.. we most definitely need Berkowicz and Benson to clean up the Palin/Parnell mess!

    • CO almost native says:

      Yup, Parnell’s election crew asked for Federal permission, went ahead with their plan- the feds said, no, not a good idea, so they ended up in court. oops.

  24. Megaera says:

    Am I in a parallel universe? An honest judge? A correct decision? I LIKE it.

  25. benlomond2 says:

    why does it appear that the Palinista’s still in the Alaskan goverment operate under Scarah’s manifesto of ” I can do what I want until someone in court says I can’t ” ??? How many of these people are up for election, or do Alaskan’s have to suffer them screwing with the system for two more years ???

    • Alaska Pi says:

      We have to suffer with them until Parnell is gone- many are executive branch appointees and some are career folks who seem to have derailed …
      or pushed off the tracks by the SPI and SPII regimes…

      • benlomond2 says:

        OT – AP – I have 3 days off this weekend, – I’ll have time to finish reading/listening to the info you provided…. Thanks for your thoughts …

    • Moose Pucky says:

      With a new governor, we also get a new Lt. Governor. And they can appoint a new A.G.

  26. Carol says:

    No cheating, sounds good, even tho the lies are thick and fast. Got a flyer the other day from the Alaska Republican Party saying that the Social Security Trust Funds is being raided to pay for wasteful government programs. I’ve searched, snopes, politifact, truthorfiction and haven’t seen that specifically addressed, other than mentioning accounting name changes during LBJ’s term and some other time.
    Can anyone identify any time that money specified for Social Security has been used of any other purposes? These “raids” as well as other email hoaxes (lies) have shown up in Miller’s full page ads that say Congress exempts itself from the laws they make for others.
    Thanks for any details that anyone out there on the mudflats has.

    • CO almost native says:

      Social Security Trust funds have been “borrowed” into the General Fund in the past; I don’t know the status of them now. It has been done by Republicans as well as Democrats- so it’s ironic that the GOPers are now complaining- I think it happened on Bush2’s watch. As far as “wasteful spending”…it went into the budget, not a specific program.

      • Carol says:

        Details, I want Details! Anybody got any specifics?

      • physicsmom says:

        It started with Reagan. I believe the Social Security Trust is littered with IOU’s from other agencies which have borrowed from it. That’s part of the problem with the SST, it is solvent until something like 2030 (if nothing is done like raising the ceiling on contributions), but will possibly run out of money sooner if the “loans” are not paid back in time. That being said, however, the loans are backed by “the full faith and credit of the USA” just like the loans we’ve taken from China, so it’s unlikely we’ll default on ourselves. Bottom line, I agree with Thom Hartmann – all the fiscal problems began with Saint Ronnie.

        • Carol says:

          Thank you all. I also got this to offer
          the latest I saw on the solvency time is 2040 or 2041 somewhere in there. My suggestion (have to make the suggestion to the right people otherwise it’s slactivism)
          is that the first, say $10,000 of income is exempt and then there is no upper limit. Employers will withold taxes that will be refunded upon doing taxes at the end of the year. The article I provided a link to pretty much says that Social Security isn’t and is being raided constantly – depending on the definition of raid.

  27. Martha says:

    Is there any truth to the rumor that ;

    Murkowski camp is handing out press on tattoos of her name, so you can apply it to your forearm, then roll up your sleeve once you are at the poll, to avoid spelling mistakes?

    What would happen if folks were caught doing this?

    What if you “pulled a Palin” and wrote her name on the palm of your hand?

    • gm says:

      Yes they are, and that’s fine. You can take whatever you want into the polling booth. Just can’t display it at the polling place for others to see.

    • I used to take a sheet of paper with me so I could remember how I had decided to vote, especially on judges and issues that weren’t as familiar. That was never a problem. It’s just that you can’t campaign, were clothing that supports one side or the other or have it posted anywhere. Is that a national standard or is each state in charge of making sure there isn’t voter fraud or undue influence on voting?

    • Moose Pucky says:

      You are allowed to help yourself, as long as your notes are not visible to influence others at the polls. Poll workers are not allowed to electioneer with write-in lists..

  28. the problem child says:

    Will those sequestered votes still be reviewed? McAdams (and yes, Miller) shouldn’t lose out on their supporters’ early votes just because the Division of Elections was facilitating hanky-panky when the votes were cast.

    • As I said above, that’ll be a sticky mess to sort out, won’t it. They’ll have to come up with some standard of how to count those votes. It seems to me that only the Murkowski votes should be in question, but who knows.

      I don’t remember what they did when Rossi and Gregoire were in a recount for governor, but I know we were getting calls here for both our daughters because the elections board had screwed up the spelling on their last names when they married. But I think that was more a matter of whether their ballots were going to be counted at all, rather than who got their votes.

    • Moose Pucky says:

      The only votes that should be questioned would be the write-ins, as they were the only votes that could be influenced by the illegal lists at the polls.

  29. cochie says:

    “No cheating” for goodness sake….are folks are worried cause someone might get help spelling ?
    give me a break….big deal….I think pretty much folks have made up their minds..except for some Miller supporters that are “losing the faith” …. and big surprise..they aren’t going to McAddams.
    I think folks will vote for whoever has the best chance of beating Miller (according to the polls )
    Miller supporters are dwindleing quickly out of embarrassment. (you can only take so much…)

    • Blooper says:

      Cochie: I think the lists could sway the results in an election that is so close as this one is projected to be. Even if the lists only affect a few hundred or thousand votes or so, that could make a big difference in the outcome. Look at how close the Minnesota debacle was. Just my humble opinion, of course. You could be right as well. 🙂

    • Lee323 says:

      The flaw in your argument is the assumption that the majority of voters are as well-educated about the issues and candidates as you are. There’s a large percentage of the electorate who feel it’s their civic duty to vote, but either aren’t interested in the specifics of political issues OR are just too busy with other concerns to find the time to spend on analysis of the issues and candidates.

      Without a doubt, a significant percentage of the electorate will walk into that voting booth next Tuesday with little knowledge of the issues or the candidates beyond name recognition. A handy-dandy write-in voters list with Murkowski’s name provided in the voting booth brings up two questions: Is that list fair to the candidates who legally won their respective primaries? Or is this a case of illegal electioneering by a primary loser?

      The judge made the correct and legal decision.

      • fishingmamma says:

        I agree with you. I have worked with people that did not know who the governor was at the time, even though that is the name at the bottom of their paychecks. Those are the people that do not watch the news or read the paper. I think that is why we repeated the Stevens/ Murkowski/Young ticket for so long. They just pick a familiar name. If there is no Murkowski, they will vote for someone else.

        • physicsmom says:

          You have hit the nail on the head for many locales. Here in Michigan, if your name is Ryan or Murray or Hathaway, you are a shoo-in for judge. Pretty much any Irish sounding name will do. There are similar dynasties in other races as well. I love the notion that if there is no Murkowski on the ballot, people will choose someone else – the problem is that in Red Alaska, the default vote may then fall to Lyin Joe. We can only hope under these circumstances, the uninformed voter may have heard something good about Scott McAdams along the way and fill in his oval instead. Go Scott!
          BTW, totally delighted by the judge’s ruling. Will be interesting to see what happens to the votes cast during the tainted time.

    • Alaska Pi says:

      Voters have a set of responsibilities themselves.
      They have a variety of methods allowable under law already in place should they desire to write in Ms Murkowski- the simplest being to take the responsibilty to fill out theuir sample ballot as they desire to vote and manage to get it with them to the polls to use as a template in the privacy of the voting booth.
      It has covers which allow them to meet the no-electioneering within 200 feet of a polling place rules quite easily .
      I do think the law is correct- that it is up to the voter to take themselves to the polls prepared to vote.
      Assistance for voters with disabilities from poll workers makes sense- providing a state sponsored spelling cheat sheet does not.
      Assuming that beating Mr Miller is so important that we throw out the rules makes us irresponsible and cheats ourselves…
      And he is enough of both to fill our quota for the whole state.

    • The problem I see with this argument is that cheating is cheating, no matter what the degree. And when we are talking about honesty in voting eveything needs to be done by the book. This time it’s help in spelling her name, next time what concession will be made because this one little deviation from the rules slipped by or was allowed.

      There are people who haven’t made up their minds when they go to vote and if they see a name that is more familiar than the others, then it will jog something in their brain and they’ll pick that person. If her name is not on the ballot, then it’s unfair for the voters to get help remembering it. And haven’t they said that allowances will be made for spelling if the intent is clear? That’s a bit murky, imo, but kind of fair since Lisa’s name doesn’t look anything like the other candidate’s names.

      I would be a bit unhappy if I had voted for McAdams or Miller, for that matter, and had my ballot sequestered because Lisa’s name was posted somewhere in the polling place. They’ll have a mess sorting that if the race is at all close, as it seems it might be.

      • Moose Pucky says:

        They are all sequestered, because none have been counted. We don’t know who voted for whom yet on those ballots. Only the write-ins would likely be legally challenged.

        But, yes, it’s disconcerting. And you can blame Murkowski/Parnell/Campbell/Sullivan and whoever else has been involved in working on this decision to send out write-in lists to poll workers to “assist” voters.

    • Moose Pucky says:

      Give it up, Cochie. Join us in voting for McAdams if you want to send a good Senator to Washington D.C. and if you want your vote to be clearly counted on election day.

  30. E of Anc P says:

    Good for the Democratic Party. I was wondering if it was going to have to go in front of Judge to get settled. Vote for Scott McAdams.

  31. Lee323 says:

    As long as write-in lists at the polls were available for Murkowski, she had an improved chance of beating Miller. Now that her status has been reduced to a true write-in candidate, her chances of winning are way down.

    Democrats/ Moderates who vote for Murkowski out of fear of Miller will actually be giving Miller a better chance of winning the election. Period.

    If Democrats/ Moderates vote for McAdams, then Murkowski will slip back into the role of splitting the Republican votes with Miller. A McAdam’s win is very possible if Dems/ Mods vote their values by voting for Scott McAdams!

    Time for Democrats and moderates of every stripe to repudiate the politics of Miller (lying whackjob) and Murkowski (a 90% voting supporter of The Party of NO!). Mitch McConnell’s stated number one goal in the next two years is NOT the economy…or jobs….or any of the other pressing problems which are squeezing the middle class……No, he said his number one goal is to make sure that Obama is a one-term president! Do you really want to send another GOP Senator to D.C. who will agree with McConnell’s agenda that party politics come before the economy and jobs??

    Be aggressive in your voting, not fearful.

    • Bigtoe says:

      That’s exactly the attitude to have. Absolutely. Also, watching Scott McAdams on Ed today, it appears the women vote is going to have a HUGE impact on this election. More women seem to be moving from LM to Scott McAdams.

  32. Polly says:

    So, I voted today. Will that affect my ballot? What a mess.

    • Moose Pucky says:

      As long as you voted for McAdams, you should be fine. I would think all write-ins at this point could be legally challenged.

  33. Sarafina says:


    This is all fascinating/horrifying/amazing. My question: what about the poll workers who were told it was acceptable to produce the list? Had they never worked an election before?

    What happened to them? Are they still on the job?


    • Moose Pucky says:

      Poll workers were “instructed” by Parnell’s Division of Elections to use the lists to “assist” voters.
      There were comments in ADN today from several poll workers that they were relieved to have the law clarified again as it sure reduced the pressure on them to have the rules be clear.

  34. zyggy says:

    It was the only correct decision the judge could make.

  35. LA Brian says:

    Where’s the ‘Like’ button?

    Meanwhile, I’m looking forward to walking across the street and voting next Tuesday in California.

  36. Bretta says:

    I am so sad for the disenfranchised voters, but I am so happy for this decision – it is the correct one.

    • Moose Pucky says:

      Nobody’s being disenfranchised.

    • cg says:

      Nobody’s disenfranchised.
      A reminder on write-in candidates. They are not the official party candidate, as outlined in primary election process.
      A competent qualified voter who is committed to a write-in candidate has the resources to properly cast a vote for the candidate of their choosing. And one assumes, is committed to doing so. learning their name is the least of it.
      In fact, I firmly believe that a questionable ballot should be suspect on the basis of:
      a. a possibility that the voter doesn’t meet the necessary requirements of being 18 years old and a competent adult.
      b. the possibility of coercion

  37. gm says:

    Judge upholds the law. Kinda cool. It didn’t take a rocket scientist to read our Alaska laws, regs, and election procedures and conclude that the division of elections screwed up. Which concerns me greatly. . .Either the A.G.(who advised them) can’t read, is stupid, or corrupt. None are good.

    • Moose Pucky says:

      And Lisa’s right there with them appealing to the Supreme Court. That and her false and misleading campaign flyers about endorsements and poll numbers should have Alaskan voters writing her totally off.

  38. DF says:

    It would be interesting to investigate Hickel’s write-in campaign back in the 70s to see if there was any list available there. It’s the only other one I remember in Alaska that garnered a lot of support and had real success.

    • Zyxomma says:

      If I remember correctly what I’ve read about it, at that time stickers filled in with his name were used. They shouldn’t have been allowed then, and weren’t allowed this time. What the poll workers did was very clearly illegal. I’m glad the ballots are being sequestered, and applaud the judge’s decision.

      Of course, all this is moot if one makes the sane choice and votes for on-the-ballot Scott McAdams!

      Just an opinion from Outside.

  39. Moose Pucky says:

    From the ruling:

    “Finally, the Divison’s justification for its new policy is without merit because it based on an unreasonable and arbitrary interpretation of its own regulation.”

    So that sort of makes the Div. of Elections pretty suspect on just about anything they say or do with regard to write-ins from here on out also.

    So just vote Scott McAdams–the best and safest vote we’ve got!

  40. Moose Pucky says:

    Thanks, Judge Frank Pfiffner, for restoring our faith in the judicial system in Alaska.

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