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Foreign leaders see 'America in decline,' Australian foreign minister tells Romney

Hoang Dinh Nam / AFP - Getty Images

Australian Foreign Minister Bob Carr told Mitt Romney that other foreign leaders view the United States as being "in decline," the GOP presidential candidate said Sunday.

SAN FRANCISCO -- Australia's foreign minister privately warned Sunday that foreign leaders see "America in decline," Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney said.

Romney said he met with Foreign Minister Bob Carr in a San Francisco hotel Sunday night shortly before a Republican fundraiser.

He said Carr suggested that America could improve that international perception "with one budget deal" that helps balance the budget.

"And this idea of America in decline, it was interesting [Carr] said that; he led the talk of American being in decline," Romney said at the fundraiser, according to The Sydney Morning Herald newspaper. "And if they're thinking about investing in America, entrepreneurs putting their future in America -- if they think America's in decline they're not gonna do it."

The foreign minister requested the private meeting, a Romney spokesman said. The campaign would not say whether the two discussed foreign policy.

Risk and reward await Romney on foreign trip

Romney is scheduled to launch his first trip abroad as his party's presumptive presidential nominee later this week. He's set to meet with leaders in England, Israel and Poland.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.