Donald Trump drew jeers while dinging Marco Rubio in front of conservative activists on Friday, the latest twist in his newest feud with a 2016 rival.
"You have this clown, Marco Rubio, I’ve been so nice to him," Trump said to boos from the crowd gathered at the Values Voters summit in Washington, D.C. "I've been so nice and then — no, but he's in favor of immigration and he has been, he has been, it was the 'Gang of 8' and you remember the ‘Gang of 8,’ it was terrible."
It was a reference to Rubio’s work with a bipartisan group of senators that unsuccessfully attempted to pass immigration reform with legislation that included a path to citizenship for undocumented immigrants -- a proposal that is highly unpopular among conservative voters.
The Florida senator has become the latest target for Trump, who has engaged in direct attacks — both personal and political — on a number of his Republican rivals and the media.
Rubio, who was well received by the crowd when he spoke earlier in the day, has jabbed back at Trump after the frontrunner dubbed him an inexperienced “lightweight” and saying he was sweaty at the last GOP presidential debate.
"Donald Trump has had a bad week, Carly [Fiorina] embarrassed him on stage and he's not reacting well to it,” Rubio told NBC News’ Katy Tur after speaking at the gathering of conservative activisits. "This campaign is not about him, this campaign is about America."
When asked about the boos following his speech, Trump said they “were cheers.”
Recent polling shows Trump’s lead over the 2016 GOP field is still intact, though Fiorina and Ben Carson have made gains in recent weeks.