July 26th, 2011
04:38 PM ET
The White House issued an official veto threat to the debt ceiling bill proposed by House Speaker John Boehner, amid speculation President Obama would consider signing the bill if it passed both houses of Congress.
But the phrasing of the statement notably appears to allow President Obama a little wiggle room on the matter, perhaps offering Republicans a glimmer of hope the Boehner-backed measure would be signed if it scored full congressional approval and was the only option.
"The Administration strongly opposes House passage of the amendment in the nature of a substitute to S. 627," the White House said in a Statement of Administration Policy (SAP). "If S. 627 is presented to the President, the President's senior advisors would recommend that he veto this bill."
Past veto statements by the White House have directly said the president would veto a bill instead of declaring senior advisors would recommend he do it.
The statement came on the heels of a growing sense on the Hill that Obama might sign the GOP-backed plan because he notably did not threaten to veto it in his primetime speech Wednesday. Still the president has long threatened to veto any bill that proposes raising the ceiling in a two-step process, as Boehner’s does.
When asked about a veto threat during his daily briefing, White House Press Secretary Jay Carney dismissed the issue all together, saying the subject was moot because the administration does not even expect the measure to pass the Senate.