Republican Senate candidate Joe Miller said late Sunday he is dropping his opposition to incumbent Lisa Murkowski being certified as winner in the Alaska Senate race, but will continue with a federal lawsuit.
"After careful consideration and seeking the counsel of people whose opinion I respect and trust, I have decided that the federal case must go forward. The integrity of the election is vital and ultimately the rule of law must be our standard," Miller said in a statement. "Nevertheless, I have also decided to withdraw our opposition to the certification of the election, ensuring that Alaska will have its full delegation seated when the 112th Congress convenes next month."
Last week, the Alaska Supreme Court ruled against Miller in his appeal, denying his claim that state law was not followed on counting write-in votes.
In the ruling, the Alaska Supreme Court affirmed the decision of the superior court, saying, "There are no remaining issues raised by Miller that prevent this election from being certified." At the time, a spokesman for Miller's campaign said they were "disappointed" with the decision.
"We are disappointed the Alaska Supreme Court has ignored the plain text of Alaska law and allowed the Division of Elections to effectively amend the state election code without even giving the public an opportunity for notice and comment," Miller spokesman Randy DeSoto said in a statement Wednesday.
I have no idea what Miller intends to accomplish with his federal case unless he's trying for Democrat Mark Begich's Senate seat in 2014 (quite possible).
There's also my half tongue-in-cheek proposal that Miller's goal here is to somehow make direct statewide elections of a Senator so ridiculous that it will somehow spark a backlash against the 17th Amendment's direct election of Senators. I think it's much more likely that it will spark a backlash against Joe Miller, but there's got to be some method to the madness here, especially if he's giving up.
Most likely he is indeed trying to get Alaska voting laws changed, and has no problems with getting an appellate court or even SCOTUS involved in some national precedent designed to make voting more difficult. Keep an eye on Joey Bag of Crazy here.