Is cap-and-trade making a comeback?
Closed-door talks extended to both ends of Pennsylvania Avenue yesterday as President Obama, key senators and industry officials searched for an elusive agreement on comprehensive energy and climate change legislation.
At the White House, Obama implored 14 Democrats and Republicans to reach consensus before the end of this year on a bill that puts a first-ever price on carbon emissions, rather than settle for the energy-only approach favored by some moderates.
Those talks occupied 70 minutes of Obama’s time as eight Democrats and six Republicans went around the Cabinet Room describing their demands. Obama opened the meeting by insisting the Senate stick to his plan to cap greenhouse gas emissions, and in return pledged to make concessions on oil and gas drilling and nuclear power.
You have to wonder if this is his back up plan on getting a major part of his domestic agenda passed in case health care falls apart. While not as much of a hot button issue like health care, cap-and-trade could easily turn into a damaging issue back home for Democrats in Republican-leaning district. In other words, it’s their funeral.