The media have fundamentally failed the American people by refusing to investigate any question about the integrity of widespread mail-in voting in the 2020 election and by dismissing all concern over documented election irregularities as conspiracy theories.

Asking questions about how unprecedented millions of mail-in ballots were verified and processed is not sour grapes over an election loss. I agree with President Trump that whomever is affirmed by the Electoral College should take office on January 20. But the broader issue of election integrity is at stake here.

Every American needs to feel confident his or her vote is being legally counted, and that election boards are only counting legally cast votes. We can only achieve this by vigorously investigating every hint of impropriety, which the media has declined to do.

The Trump campaign has raised questions about how ballots were verified and, I believe, has found sufficient irregularities to merit further investigation.

For example, though the partial Wisconsin recount changed a minimal amount of votes from one candidate to another, the recount revealed absentee ballots that were counted without an absentee ballot request on file — a violation of Wisconsin law. Municipal clerks were found to have been illegally fixing errors on absentee ballot envelopes.

In Philadelphia, the Trump campaign had to go to court in order to allow poll watchers to be within six feet of the ballot counting rather than 20 feet away.

In Nevada, a whistleblower filed an affidavit stating that he personally witnessed workers disregarding signature verification and being told by superiors to push ballots through without verification. For the first time ever this year, Nevada mailed ballots to every registered voter, leading to untold numbers of ballots being sent to outdated addresses and deceased voters. This comes in addition to Nevada’s use of a machine to verify signatures on ballots, raising questions about whether any of those signatures were properly vetted. The media was more than willing to accept any whistleblower report that alleged malfeasance by Trump, but not those blowing the whistle on irregular signature verification.

I am not an election expert, but I agree with the many folks back in Indiana and across the country who don’t understand why we wouldn’t further investigate these irregularities.

To me, the important question is not whether enough votes will change hands to alter the result in any given state. The priority should be whether the large percentage of American voters, some of whom elected me as their voice in the Senate, can be confident that our electoral process is free and fair. Failure even to look into claims of voter fraud would be a dereliction of duty.

In 2016, Democrats and the media were emphatic that foreign interference was a grave threat to our elections. As president, Trump took action to prevent foreign election interference through aggressive executive actions mandating interagency reporting of potential interference, authorizing strong sanctions against nations found to be seeking to disturb our elections, and providing on-site cybersecurity support to states to prevent foreign actors from influencing our elections.

Trump and Republicans took the prospect of election impropriety in 2016 seriously and took steps to safeguard against it. The result was a 2018 and 2020 election that by all expert accounts was free of foreign interference. Now it is time for the media and Democrats to lend the same respect to Republicans’ concerns about misconduct with mail-in ballots to ensure everyone can be confident in election results going forward.

Even if the media will not admit that any of the allegations in sworn affidavits regarding election irregularities occurred, they should at least admit that it benefits all of us to thoroughly investigate every claim of voter fraud or election interference.

If we do not turn over every stone in this election, there is little chance for the country to come together on anything.