Democrats are united on progressive change, yet media narrative wrongly asserts far left dominate divided party
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As the political primary season for both parties comes to a close, the pundit class has latched on to a general election narrative: the Republicans’ divisions have been suppressed by retirements and brutal primaries to emerge as Donald Trump’s party, and the Democrats are irreparably split and a far left wing is taking control.

That new media narrative matters not only because it gets the Democratic Party wrong, but critically, it accepts the Republican talking points on why their own base should fear a Democratic victory in November. The congressional Republicans’ and their dark money outside groups are running ads saying people should fear Democratic candidates and their “liberal agenda.”

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The narrative is false and letting it stand will help the Republicans who are on their back.

Don’t believe me? Go ahead and look at what we are all fighting for. There is broad agreement within our party and elected candidates that we should bring down the cost of health care and prescription drugs, achieve universal health coverage, protect people with pre-existing conditions, protect Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid, support public education, create more good-paying jobs through investments in infrastructure and education, end the corruption in Washington by getting big money out of politics, make sure corporations are paying their fair share of taxes, eliminate outsourcing by fighting for fairer trade deals, pass comprehensive immigration reform, fix our broken criminal justice system, implement national paid family and medical leave, and ensure equal pay for equal work.

This is what the Democratic Party’s progressive agenda looks like. From Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez’s district in the Bronx and Queens to Rep. Conor Lamb’s in southwestern Pennsylvania, people are sending Democrats to Washington to fight for that agenda. And while there may be differences on how each one of us would prefer to achieve these goals, or how we rank various issues on that list, any differences are more often than not small and technical; our end goals and our values are the same.

We are excitedly nominating a huge number of women candidates and candidates from all backgrounds, ethnicity and sexual orientation. Many candidates from all walks of life are running with great ideas, and Democrats welcome them and will fight alongside them.

Pundits and Republican operatives would turn that diversity into a false narrative about a Democratic Party divided on fundamentals and dominated by a “left fringe.”

Democrats may emphasize different parts of our agenda, but our shared values are evident throughout.

Just look at how united Democrats are when it comes to issues facing our country right now. Hundreds of children are still separated from their parents and relatives due to President TrumpDonald John TrumpHouse Republican threatens to push for Rosenstein impeachment unless he testifies Judge suggests Trump’s tweet about Stormy Daniels was ‘hyperbole’ not defamation Rosenstein faces Trump showdown MORE’s zero tolerance policy. Real wages are down from last year, despite promises from the president on down that worker’s paychecks would grow by thousands of dollars due to their rigged for the rich tax scam—which, by the way, every single Democrat in the House and Senate voted against. All the while, corporations have used their new tax cuts on record-setting stock buybacks for their wealthy shareholders. Women’s health care is under attack from the Department of Health and Human Services and Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh. The opioid crisis is raging on, with new estimates from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimating that 72,000 Americans were killed last year due to drug overdoses. Nutrition assistance programs, which keep Americans from going hungry, are being threatened in this year’s farm bill. And a new report from the Government Accountability Office shows that schools across the country may have lead in their water.

So I say, with all sincerity and respect to the media: don’t adopt this false narrative that is a lifeline to a Republican Party that is endangering the country. Democrats are unified around an agenda that will help working people and the middle class, and we are not going to back down from our work to fix these problems. One of the parties has to be.

DeLauro represents Connecticut’s 3rd Disrict and is Co-Chair of the Democratic Steering and Policy Committee. She is also ranking member of the Labor, Health and Human Services, and Education Appropriations Subcommittee.