Trump: Ocasio-Cortez being 'very disrespectful' to Pelosi

President TrumpDonald John TrumpTrump conversation with foreign leader part of complaint that led to standoff between intel chief, Congress: report Pelosi: Lewandowski should have been held in contempt 'right then and there' Trump to withdraw FEMA chief nominee: report MORE on Friday criticized Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-CortezAlexandria Ocasio-CortezOcasio-Cortez mocks 'White House ethics' in Instagram post Overnight Health Care — Presented by Partnership for America's Health Care Future — Pelosi set to unveil drug price plan | Abortion rate in US hits lowest level since Roe v. Wade | Dems threaten to subpoena Juul Kennedy to challenge Markey in Senate primary MORE (D-N.Y.) amid a dispute between the freshman congresswoman and House Speaker Nancy PelosiNancy PelosiPelosi: Lewandowski should have been held in contempt 'right then and there' Democrats bicker over strategy on impeachment Overnight Health Care — Presented by Partnership for America's Health Care Future — Pelosi set to unveil drug price plan | Abortion rate in US hits lowest level since Roe v. Wade | Dems threaten to subpoena Juul MORE (D-Calif.).

The president came to Pelosi's defense when he was asked about the simmering feud as he left the White House for fundraisers in Wisconsin and Ohio.

"I think Cortez is being very disrespectful to somebody who's been there a long time," Trump said, chastising the first-term lawmaker without using her full last name.

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"I deal with Nancy Pelosi a lot and we go back and forth and it’s fine, but I think that a group of people is being very disrespectful to her," he continued. "And you know what, I don’t think that Nancy can let that go on."

Ocasio-Cortez “should treat Nancy Pelosi with respect,” he added.

Ocasio-Cortez expressed frustration with Pelosi after the Speaker gave an interview over the weekend in which she downplayed the significance of four progressive Democrats who bucked party leadership on a border funding vote late last month.

Ocasio-Cortez told The Washington Post on Wednesday that she felt Pelosi was targeting her and three other progressive freshman women of color known as the "squad": Reps. Rashida TlaibRashida Harbi TlaibOmar says she hopes Netanyahu not reelected Bill Maher, Michael Moore spar over Democrats' strategy for 2020 Young insurgents aren't rushing to Kennedy's side in Markey fight MORE (Mich.), Ilhan OmarIlhan OmarHillicon Valley: Zuckerberg to meet with lawmakers | Big tech defends efforts against online extremism | Trump attends secretive Silicon Valley fundraiser | Omar urges Twitter to take action against Trump tweet Omar asks Twitter what it's doing in response to Trump spreading 'lies that put my life at risk' Trump seeks to expand electoral map with New Mexico rally MORE (Minn.) and Ayanna PressleyAyanna PressleyHillicon Valley: Zuckerberg to meet with lawmakers | Big tech defends efforts against online extremism | Trump attends secretive Silicon Valley fundraiser | Omar urges Twitter to take action against Trump tweet Omar asks Twitter what it's doing in response to Trump spreading 'lies that put my life at risk' The Hill's Morning Report - Trump eyes narrowly focused response to Iran attacks MORE (Mass.).

She reiterated that stance on Thursday, but clarified that Pelosi is "absolutely not" racist.

Trump seized on the latter point, and backed Pelosi.

"She is not a racist," Trump said. "For them to call her a racist is a disgrace."

The barbs from Ocasio-Cortez have sparked a wave of infighting among Democrats in recent days, with several caucus members rushing to defend the Speaker.

--Updated 10:57 a.m.