Grammatical role of 'whatever the circumstances'

English Idioms and Expressions, Intermediate level

ESL/EFL Test #5 [color=blue]“As happy as the day is long”, question 1

I’m sure that he could make a better job of being prime minister any day of the week.

(a) whatever the details
(b) whatever the time
© whatever the circumstances
(d) whatever the week

English Idioms and Expressions, Intermediate level

ESL/EFL Test #5 [color=blue]“As happy as the day is long”, answer 1

I’m sure that he could make a better job of being prime minister whatever the circumstances.

Correct answer: © whatever the circumstances

Your answer was: [color=red]incorrect
I’m sure that he could make a better job of being prime minister whatever the time.
[size=200]_________________________[/size]

Hi, could you please tell me what the role ‘whatever the circumstances’ plays here grammatically? Can I consider it as an abbreviation of ‘whatever the circumstances are’?

Hi,

In fact the full version suggests: Whatever the circumstances ‘might be’. This follows on from ‘could’ indicating ‘would be able to’

Alan