John Kemp is a Reuters columnist. The views expressed are his own.
President Barack Obama read the last rites for national cap and trade in 2010 on Feb. 2, while senior Democrats in the House of Representatives prepared to put a stake through its heart to ensure the Environmental Protection Agency does not try to resurrect it unilaterally without congressional approval.
Obama finally bowed to the inevitable and admitted cap and trade might need to be separated from a more popular green jobs bill in the Senate, a shift that would effectively end prospects for cap and trade in 2010.
In a question-and-answer session the president commented: “The only thing I would say about it is this: We may be able to separate these things out. And it’s possible that’s where the Senate ends up.”
Obama made no mention of cap and trade in his State of the Union speech last week and it was absent from the list of priorities the president outlined in a meeting with Senate Democrats on Wednesday, when he called on them to “finish the job” on healthcare and financial reform.