(CNN) - Former Democratic National Committee Chairman Howard Dean dismissed talk Sunday that he will challenge President Obama in 2012, and he predicted the president will avoid a primary fight.
"I don't think he's going to face an opponent in the Democratic primary," Dean said in an interview on CBS. "I think that would be a bad thing for the country, and I think it would be a bad thing for the Democratic Party.
"The history of people running against presidents in their own party is the challenger loses and then the president is weakened and loses," said Dean, who also is a former Vermont governor.
Obama's senior adviser David Axelrod said that while he "can't predict" if a primary challenger will surface he noted "I see strong support among Democrats for this president."
"They understand that he's fighting hard, trying hard to move this country forward," Axelrod said in an interview on CNN's State of the Union with Candy Crowley. "They understand what we've accomplished already. The biggest lament I hear from Democrats is, 'You've done so much, how come people aren't responding better?"