I'm working on a proposal with a strict character limit. I expect the funding agency will compute the character count in my document by simply extracting the text from my PDF. The problem is that the dot leaders in my table of contents are eating up a good chunk of my character count.
I don't want to alter the layout of my table of contents too drastically, since what LaTeX provides as a default already looks very nice with my document style. (For example, I think the style favoured by Robert Bringhurst or the ones featured in the answers to this question wouldn't fit well.) Would it be possible to simply replace the character-based dot leaders in the table of contents with a graphical dotted or dashed line, such that the dots/dashes are aligned from line to line? Maybe even a solid rule would work in my case if there is no easy solution.