Sanders: Pelosi is being 'a little bit' too tough on Ocasio-Cortez

Sanders: Pelosi is being 'a little bit' too tough on Ocasio-Cortez
© Greg Nash

Sen. Bernie SandersBernie SandersSanders wishes Ocasio-Cortez happy birthday Video of fake Trump shooting members of media shown at his Miami resort: report Sanders can gain ground by zeroing in on corruption MORE (I-Vt.), a 2020 White House hopeful, said Sunday that he supports freshman congresswomen including Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-CortezAlexandria Ocasio-CortezSanders wishes Ocasio-Cortez happy birthday Democrat launches primary challenge to Ocasio-Cortez Ocasio-Cortez fires back at Washington Times after story on her 'high-dollar hairdo' MORE (D-N.Y.) for energizing their progressive bases as the lawmakers clash with Democratic leaders. 

"Do you think the Speaker is being too tough on them?" NBC's Chuck ToddCharles (Chuck) David ToddRand Paul calls for probe of Democrats over Ukraine letter White House officials stand by Syria withdrawal, sanctions delay amid bipartisan pushback Sunday shows — Officials rush to Trump's defense on Syria, sanctions MORE asked Sanders on "Meet the Press,"  noting that Ocasio-Cortez recently called out Speaker Nancy PelosiNancy PelosiBiden on impeachment: 'I'm the only reason' it's happening Democrats to offer resolution demanding Trump reverse Syria decision Rand Paul calls for probe of Democrats over Ukraine letter MORE (D-Calif) for her "explicit singling out of newly elected women of color." 

"I think a little bit," Sanders responded. "I think you cannot ignore the young people of this country who are passionate about economic and racial and social and environmental justice. You've got to bring them in not alienate them."

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Sanders, who has also clashed with Democratic Party leaders, said the future of the country and party "rests with young people." 

"Is this part of this bigger disruption you helped lead for years ago?" Todd asked Sanders. 

"What Alexandria and other young women, and women of color, are saying, we have got to reach out to young people. We have got to hear the pain of the working class of this country, and that is causing some of the disruption in the leadership of the Democratic Party," Sanders responded. 

"I support Alexandria's and the other women’s desire to bring more people, especially young people, working-class people, into the  Democratic Party. That is the future of the Democratic Party," he added. 

Tensions have been escalating between four freshman Democrats, including Ocasio-Cortez and Reps.  Ilhan OmarIlhan OmarNew California law bans school lunch debt shaming The Hill's 12:30 Report — Presented by USAA — Ex-Ukraine ambassador testifies Trump pushed for her ouster The Hill's Morning Report — Arrest of Giuliani associates triggers many questions MORE (D-Minn.), Rashida TlaibRashida Harbi TlaibTrump labels Tlaib 'a despicable human being' Tlaib says Democrats have discussed detaining White House officials who don't testify The 13 House Democrats who back Kavanaugh's impeachment MORE (D-Mich.) and Ayanna PressleyAyanna PressleyPennsylvania candidate would be first autistic woman elected to a state legislature Pressley joins hundreds of activists calling for Kavanaugh impeachment: 'I believe in the power of us' The 13 House Democrats who back Kavanaugh's impeachment MORE (D-Mass.), and Pelosi after the group did not vote in favor of a  House funding bill to provide resources for agencies handling migrants at the border. 

Pelosi called out the representatives in a New York Times column, leading to a tense back and forth between her and Ocasio-Cortez. 

Pelosi said last week she was done talking about the issue.