Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell blocked efforts Tuesday to consider legislation increasing payments to individuals to $2,000 from the $600 included in the coronavirus stimulus package.

McConnell, R-Ky., objected to a request from Senate Democratic Leader Chuck Schumer of New York to clear the House-passed legislation introduced after President Donald Trump demanded the higher payments. In his remarks, McConnell only agreed to “begin a process” to bring the president’s proposal for $2,000 checks “into focus,” while saying the Senate definitely would vote on the legislation authorizing $740 billion for defense.

The bill that passed the House with a two-thirds majority Monday would give $2,000 checks to both eligible adults and their children, rather than the current $600 per person. As in the current law, individuals with Social Security numbers would receive payments even if their spouses are ineligible.

The House legislation drew the support of 44 Republicans, including both of New Jersey’s representatives, even as three-fourths of GOP lawmakers voted no