The Obama administration has been too negative in its assessment of the economy, potential 2012 Republican contender Mitt RomneyWillard (Mitt) Mitt RomneyBipartisan group of senators urges FDA to pull most e-cigarettes immediately Trump judicial picks face rare GOP opposition Overnight Health Care — Presented by Partnership for America's Health Care Future — Pelosi unveils signature plan to lower drug prices | Trump says it's 'great to see' plan | Progressives pushing for changes MORE said Thursday night.

"I was very concerned early on in the administration's rhetoric. They were very, very negative, talking about this being the worst downturn since the Great Depression," Romney said during an appearance on Larry King Live. "There were stories everywhere, as a result, talking about the Depression."

"The president has to be upbeat and the economy will turn around," Romney, a failed 2008 presidential hopeful added. A former Massachusetts governor, Romney also has extensive experience as a private sector investor.

In a wide-ranging interview, Romney said that while he hopes the administration succeeds, he wishes its "liberal" policies to fail -- walking a tightrope over conservative talk radio host Rush Limbaugh's controversial hopes that Obama fails.

"I want liberal policies to fail," Romney explained. "But I want him to succeed as a president, meaning, I want him to succeed in strengthening our economy, keeping us free, bringing our troops home in success from Iraq and Afghanistan."

Watch a video of the interview below: