Howard Dean doesn’t want to challenge Obama in the primaries, but he does take issue with the tax deal. "This bill, this supposed compromise, basically gives $300 billion to people who make a million dollars a year. That is a foolish waste of money. It doesn’t do much to stimulate the economy," he says.

The Nation‘s Ari Berman joined Dean on NPR’s Talk of the Nation to examine the flaws of Obama’s tax deal compromise, and the flaws of the Democratic party at large. Do they compromise too much? Should they be more ideologically cohesive?

Berman makes the case that even if there won’t be a primary challenger, Obama can’t afford to ignore the unrest in his base.

Ari Berman is the author of the book Herding Donkeys: The Fight to Rebuild the Democratic Party and Reshape American Politics.

Braden Goyette