"We need to move along," he said. "The clock has become a rather demanding member" of Congress.
Congressional sources agreed with Dodd's assessment.
"It keeps it on course," said one, adding that "the other thing prodding Dodd along" was the knowledge that the House was insisting on a thorough reconciliation process with an open-hearing, conference-committee format to blend the Senate and House versions of the bill. "That's going to take time."
Though both Corker and Dodd said they would continue to work together, there seemed to be some disagreement on the progress of talks, particulary in one divisive era--the creation of a consumer financial protection agency.
Democrats want a powerful, independent agency with a presidential appointee, as well as rule-making, administrative and enforcement authority.
The GOP wants an agency with far less authority, saying its goals and actions could clash with other regulators and potentially threaten the safety and soundness of the financial system
Corker said "we were there," adding that differences were "miniscule", while Dodd said "we're not there yet."
Corker, in a wide-ranging and unusually candid news conference, discussed in great detail many of the measures and issues that had divided the two sides.
Dodd, however, was more circumspect, saying there were four broad areas: protecting taxpayers from too-big-to-fail firms, detecting systemic risk, over the counter derivatives and the consumer agency.
On the other hand, Corker said there was broad agreement to house the new agency in the Federal Reserve, not the Treasury. That concept insured the agency had independent funding, resolved GOP concerns about any conflicts with prudential regulators and accommodated differences over enforcement powers.
He added that the Fed "will have its wings clipped" in the area of bank supervision, reflecting the committee's common desire to revamp the existing structure of bank regulators.
An agreement on derivatives supervision has also been elusive. While Corker confirmed reports that it might not be included in the draft legislation and would instead be handled as an amendment later on in the legislative process, Dodd suggested it would be in his proposal Monday.
Where negotiators stand on the so-called Volcker rule is also unclear. The proposal, which has been pushed by the White House, would bar Wall Street firms from proprietary trading and cap the amount of insured government deposits firms could hold.
Both senators said talks would continue, with Dodd saying they would be "enhanced by having something on the table."
Today's development is hardly unexpected. Dodd has said more than once that he would introduce his own bill if he thought it was necessary.
As recently as last week, Dodd hinted that differences over the consumer agency remained significant, at which time he appeared to be drawing a line in the sand over the issue of its independence and powers.
"Dodd is going for broke, hoping that somehow he can push a bill out of committee even though he has not been able to work out crucial deals behind closed doors," said banking analyst Bert Ely. "I have been highly skeptical for months about the prospects of major financial regulation legislation this year. I now am more skeptical than ever "