Romney: Trump's election will lead to 'trickle-down racism'

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Prominent GOPers gather at Romney retreat

Mitt Romney said that Donald Trump's election could lead to what he called "trickle-down racism" spreading across the country.

"I don't want to see trickle-down racism" Romney said in an interview with CNN's Wolf Blitzer.

"Presidents have an impact on the nature of our nation, and trickle-down racism, trickle-down bigotry, trickle-down misogyny, all these things are extraordinarily dangerous to the heart and character of America," he added.

Click through images from Mitt Romney and Barack Obama during 2012 election:

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Mitt Romney and Barack Obama, 2012 election
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Romney: Trump's election will lead to 'trickle-down racism'
Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney, left is greeted by President Barack Obama before the start of the third presidential debate at Lynn University, Monday, Oct. 22, 2012, in Boca Raton, Fla. (AP Photo/David Goldman)
Moderator Candy Crowley, center, applauds as President Barack Obama, right, shakes hands with Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney during the second presidential debate at Hofstra University, Tuesday, Oct. 16, 2012, in Hempstead, N.Y. (AP Photo/Pool-Michael Reynolds)
FILE - In this June 22, 2012 file photo, President Barack Obama speaks at a conference in Orlando, Fla. On health care Obama's position is clear, as is that of his Republican opponent, former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney. Obama defends his federal health care overhaul and Romney opposes it. But come next week, when the Supreme Court rules on the constitutionality of the law, both sides are certain to scramble for political gain no matter the outcome. (AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster, File)
FILE - In this June 21, 2012 file photo, Republican presidential candidate, former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney speak Orlando, Fla. The presidential race enters the sultry summer _ a final lull before a sprint to Election Day _ with President Barack Obama and Republican Mitt Romney neck and neck and no sign that either can break away. Both sides have money concerns _ for all the flood of cash _ as well as political worries. (AP Photo/Charles Dharapak)
President Barack Obama listens as Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney answers a question during the first presidential debate at the University of Denver, Wednesday, Oct. 3, 2012, in Denver. (AP Photo/Pool, Rick Wilking)
President Barack Obama speaks as Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney listens during the second presidential debate at Hofstra University, Tuesday, Oct. 16, 2012, in Hempstead, N.Y. (AP Photo/Eric Gay)
President Barack Obama, right, and Republican presidential candidate, former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney, participate in the second presidential debate, Tuesday, Oct. 16, 2012, at Hofstra University in Hempstead, N.Y. (AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster)
Republican presidential candidate and former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney and President Barack Obama attend the 67th annual Alfred E. Smith Memorial Foundation Dinner, a charity gala organized by the Archdiocese of New York, Thursday, Oct. 18, 2012, at the Waldorf Astoria hotel in New York. (AP Photo/Charles Dharapak)
In this Oct. 16, 2012 file photo, Republican presidential candidate, former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney and President Barack Obama spar during the second presidential debate at Hofstra University in Hempstead, N.Y. (AP Photo/Charlie Neibergall, File)
FILE - In this Oct. 22, 2012 file photo, Republican presidential candidate, former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney and President Barack Obama walks past each other on stage at the end of the last debate at Lynn University in Boca Raton, Fla. Obama and Romney courted the Hispanic community during the campaign, but only spent $ 22.8 million on advertising on Spanish language television, from a total cost of $ 355 million on television advertizing in 10 states, according to the Hispanic Chamber of Commerce of the United States on Friday, Nov. 16, 2012. (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais, File)
Campaign signs for both President Barack Obama, and his challenger, Republican presidential candidate, former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney are seen in yards outside Evans City, Pa., Friday, Nov. 2, 2012. In the final days of the presidential campaign, Romney is making a concerted push into Pennsylvania, aided by outside political groups that are spending millions in last minute ads in the state to help erode Obama’s 2008 support. Polling shows Obama holding on to a 4 or 5 percentage point lead over Romney, but the trend has been in Romney’s favor. (AP Photo/Keith Srakocic)
US President Barack Obama arriveS on stage after winning the 2012 US presidential election November 7, 2012 in Chicago, Illinois. Obama swept to re-election, forging history again by defying the dragging economic recovery and high unemployment which haunted his first term to beat Republican Mitt Romney. AFP PHOTO / Saul LOEB (Photo credit should read SAUL LOEB/AFP/Getty Images)
Republican presidential candidate and former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney arrives to his election night rally, Wednesday, Nov. 7, 2012, in Boston. President Obama defeated Republican challenger former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney. (AP Photo/Elise Amendola)
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Trump has come under fire for his racially charged attacks on US District Judge Gonzalo Curiel, who is presiding over a lawsuit against Trump's now defunct real-estate school, Trump University.

Several high-profile Republicans, including House Speaker Paul Ryan and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, have distanced themselves from the attacks, although they have publicly affirmed their support of the presumptive Republican presidential nominee.

The architects of the Republican national-security agenda have also pushed back against Trump's proposed barring of Muslims entering the US.

Romney has been the target of sharp criticism for comments he made during the 2012 presidential election. News outlet Mother Jones published secretly recorded video of Romney telling a group of donors that 47% of Americans would vote for Obama because they are "dependent on the government."

The 2012 Republican presidential nominee has been an outspoken critic of Trump, and attempted to recruit a third-party candidate to mount an independent run against the business mogul. Romney was floated as a possible candidate for the anti-Trump movement, although he ruled that out during the interview.

Romney said:

I think you're not going to find a credible candidate actually running as a third-party contender. The only way to win the White House, in my view, is to become a nominee of either the Republican or the Democrat Party, and simply running to be a spoiler would not give the American people I think the chance to express their own views about Mr. Trump or about Secretary Clinton.

Watch a segment from the interview below:

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