A trio of Republican governors argued Monday that President Obama is trying to frighten the American people about the impact of the deep federal spending cuts set to begin this week, and continued urging him to pursue alternate spending reductions as they leveled criticism against his call for new tax revenue.

"I think he's trying to scare the American people," Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal (R) told reporters at a Republican Governors Association news conference after a meeting with Obama at the White House.

Deep spending cuts split evenly between defense and domestic spending known as the sequester are set to begin kicking in Friday if lawmakers don't act to avert them. Democrats are advocating a mix of new tax revenue and alternate spending cuts as a means of avoiding the sequester. Republicans are opposed to new tax increases.