Responding to some of the comments on Dot Earth:
Obama is right that a cap-and-trade program with 100 percent auctioned permits would be the functional equivalent of a carbon tax. Yes that does, in Richardson’s rather daft phrase, "take money out of the economy," in the sense that any tax does. Happily, the other half of Obama’s plan is to plow the money right back into the economy, reducing the financial hit on the working class, supporting renewable energy programs, and creating green jobs programs. The effect will not be to remove but to move money in the economy, from traditionally favored fossil fuels to efficiency and renewables.
Also, Clinton was exactly right to make the pivot she did. Americans are concerned about the economy, and as long as they think climate policy is all "sacrifice" they won’t support it. Until a candidate makes the case that an aggressive climate/energy program can revitalize the economy, the cause is doomed.