By Sam Youngman - 07/27/11 06:53 PM EDT
Twenty-four hours closer to the nation "cataclysmically" exceeding its borrowing authority, the White House appeared to be losing patience, as officials urged Congress to get moving on a plan that can pass.
White House press secretary Jay Carney continued to dismiss House Speaker John BoehnerJohn BoehnerHouse GOP faces dilemma on spending bills Overnight Finance: Puerto Rico bill clears panel | IRS chief vows to finish term | Bill would require nominees to release tax returns Overnight Defense: Pentagon chief fears sequestration's return MORE's proposal, holding steady on a veto threat from President Obama while offering qualified endorsements and a defense of Senate Majority Harry ReidHarry ReidNearly 400 House bills stuck in Senate limbo Puerto Rico debt relief faces serious challenges in Senate McCain files B amendment to boost defense spending MORE's (D-Nev.) plan.
"If you're asking me if the policy decisions of this president are going to save $1 trillion, I'd say yes," Carney said. "And I encourage you to write and talk about it."
Carney blasted Republicans at every turn of the process on Capitol Hill, criticizing BoehnerJohn BoehnerHouse GOP faces dilemma on spending bills Overnight Finance: Puerto Rico bill clears panel | IRS chief vows to finish term | Bill would require nominees to release tax returns Overnight Defense: Pentagon chief fears sequestration's return MORE for wasting time crafting and debating legislation that has no hope of passing.
"That ate up a week," Carney said. "Now we're doing it again."
The White House also upped its pushback on any notion that the Aug. 2 deadline is not real.
Carney, calling the deadline a "crisis situation," said that while the country will not "turn into a pumpkin" at midnight on Aug. 3, "we do as a country lose our borrowing authority for the first time in history."
"That deadline is hard and fast," Carney said. "There is no escaping that, and there are no off-ramps. People keep looking for off-ramps. There are no off-ramps."
While Boehner spent Wednesday whipping votes and rewriting his legislation, Carney indicated there was no change in the president's veto threat over any legislation that would only extend the debt ceiling for a few months.