Friday on CNN’s “Situation Room,” 2012 Republican presidential nominee former Gov. Mitt Romney (R-MA) said presumptive Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump’s “trickle-down racism and bigotry, trickle-down misogyny” were “dangerous to the heart and character of America.”
Partial transcript as follows;
BLITZER: Do you believe he can change?
ROMNEY: I believe who he is has been revealed by his lifetime and by words in the campaign he has spoken to this point.
BLITZER: Because he did tone down rhetoric in that speech the other day. Reince Priebus, chairman of the Republican National Committee, that was here this weekend with you called it a great victory speech and the right approach. Trump says it is time to move on now. Is that okay with you if he moves on and you forget about all of the other stuff? You think it is time to move on?
ROMNEY: Well, I can imagine that Mr. Trump would like to have people move on and forget what was said during the primary process and what’s been said over the years, but we actually take the measure of an individual over their entire career and during the primary as well. On that basis, get a sense of the person’s character, integrity, values with regards to race, religion, gender, and Mr. Trump has made that clear through the campaign to this point. I am absolutely convinced that Reince Priebus is right when he says Mr. Trump will be able to read from the text and present a different image going forward, but that is not something which is consistent with who he is as demonstrated by his past.
BLITZER: Do you think he should get a pass if he stops talking about Judge Curiel?
ROMNEY: Everyone else can make their assessment. He indicated what he believes in his heart about Mexicans and about race by comments he made about Judge Curiel. He may try to distance himself from that today but we know what he believes, and he didn’t just say it once, it wasn’t a slip of the tongue which he went back and apologized for. First of all, he has repeated it time and time again, and secondly has never apologized for it, so he obviously sticks by what he believes.
BLITZER: What would he have to do to win your support?
ROMNEY: I don’t think there’s anything I am looking for from Mr. Trump to give him my support. He’s demonstrated who he is and I decided that a person of that nature should not be the one who, if you will, becomes the example for coming generations or the example of Americans of the world. Look, I don’t want to see trickle-down racism. I don’t want to see a president of the United States saying things which change the character of the generations of Americans that are following. Presidents have an impact on the nature of our nation, and trickle-down racism and bigotry, trickle-down misogyny, all these things are extraordinarily dangerous to the heart and character of America. So I’m not looking for Mr. Trump to change a policy that more aligns with my own. This is not a matter of just policy, it is a matter of character and integrity.
BLITZER: Do you think he is racist?
ROMNEY: I think his comments time and again appeal to the racist tendency that exists in some people and I think that’s dangerous.
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