ZACHARY: Lindsey Graham not wanted, needed here

DomeLight by Jim Zachary 

Brad Raffensperger is a proud Republican. 

He is not one of those Lincoln Project Republicans. 

He is a party loyalist who supports President Donald Trump. 

But Georgia's Secretary of State is also a man serious about his job who has vouched for the integrity of Georgia elections. 

Yes, Raffensperger has come under fire at times, especially during the rollout of the state's new electronic voting machines, and he should have been more forthcoming  about the failings of those new machines last year and more transparent about the process. But that most certainly does not mean he is in any way corrupt or runs a corrupt election. 

Imagine the surprise to Raffensperger when Trump blasted Georgia elections and said the election in Georgia was being "run by Democrats."

It seems that if something does not favor Trump, then it must be some liberal, Democrat, socialist plot against him. 

Republican Gov. Brian Kemp has also been a strong supporter of President Trump. 

No one could question Kemp's pedigree as a strong, stalwart Republican.

Imagine how he must privately feel about the aspersions regarding his beloved Georgia. 

There are problems — even isolated irregularities — in every election, but that does not mean there is widespread voter fraud — not by a long shot. 

Irregularities should be investigated.

But to be perfectly clear, there is no evidence of widespread voter fraud in the United States or in the state of Georgia. 

We can all trust in the integrity of our elections, even when they do not go our way. 

When President Trump won the election four years ago and easily carried the state of Georgia, no one said that Georgia elections were corrupt. 

All votes from registered voters must be counted in every election. 

That is democracy at work. 

Across the nation, and in Georgia, elections depend not only on professional staff but also on your friends and neighbors — Democrats and Republicans — who volunteer to help guarantee a secure electoral process. 

Casting doubts on U.S. elections because you do not like the outcome of an election is about as unAmerican as you can get. 

Whether it is the president or social media conspiracy theories, spreading lies and misleading information about our elections undermines liberty itself and makes us sound more like a banana republic than one of history's great constitutional republics and a beacon of freedom. 

Maybe you do not agree with the outcome of the election. 

Maybe Georgia is changing. 

Maybe Georgia is purple and turning blue. 

But for now, today, Georgia is a state with a Republican governor, Republican-controlled House, a majority Republican Senate and a Republican secretary of state. 

Across our state, while county elections administrators consider themselves nonpartisan, it is a pretty safe bet the vast majority of them lean Republican. 

In Georgia, our local elections officials have integrity. 

Our poll workers have integrity. 

Our secretary of state has integrity. 

Our elections have integrity, regardless of the eventual outcome of this — or any — election. 

CNHI Director of Newsroom Training and Development Jim Zachary is the editor of the Valdosta Daily Times and president of the Georgia First Amendment Foundation. 

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