Sen. Susan Collins, R-Maine, said Republicans outlined their ideas proposed in a roughly $600 billion counter to Biden’s $1.9 trillion package during the two-hour meeting.
“It was a very good exchange of views,” Collins told reporters after the meeting. “I wouldn’t say that we came together on a package tonight … no one expected that in a two-hour meeting.”
Collins noted that the group – which also included Sens. Mitt Romney, R-Utah, and Rob Portman, R-Ohio, – was very “appreciative” of the president’s time, and imparted her confidence that lawmakers could reach a bipartisan deal moving forward.
The group of senators later released a joint statement emphasizing that talks would continue.
The White House on Monday night said that while there were areas of agreement, the president felt the need to "respond boldly and urgently" to the crisis at hand.
"[The president] reiterated ... that he will not slow down work on this urgent crisis response, and will not settle for a package that fails to meet the moment," the administration said in a statement.
The meeting was precipitated by a letter the group penned to the president over the weekend and calls for a more targeted, less expensive stimulus deal.
Their proposal calls for $1,000 direct payments, instead of $1,400 checks, and would not provide any funding to state and local governments.
The latter provision has been a point of contention between Republicans and Democrats in back-and-forth negotiations about stimulus provisions since the summer.
Biden could potentially pass stimulus provisions without any Republican votes, assuming he maintains the support of moderate Democrats.
Sen. Joe Manchin, D-W.Va., however, has also recently called for a more targeted stimulus proposal.