Impeachment trial of US President Donald Trump has begun in the Senate yesterday.
According to official sources, the merits of the case began with a discussion of the rules of the process and were marked by controversy and mutual accusations between the Democrats and the Republicans.
In particular, House Intelligence Committee Chairman Democrat Adam Schiff accused Senate Republican Majority Leader Mitch McConnell of colluding with Trump. Schiff is now seeking to impeach the Senate process. His remarks came after McConnell made public proposals to regulate the Senate process. In particular, Republicans have set significant barriers when it comes to calling witnesses that Democrats want to hear, as well as accessing classified government documents.
The procedure of impeachment involves Senate vote at the end of the trial. To remove Trump from office requires the support of two-thirds of all the senators. However, the majority in the US Senate now belongs to Republicans, so it is likely that the impeachment process will be blocked at this stage.
It is unclear how long the Senate trial will last. The Senate will consider two charges against the US president - abuse of power and obstruction of Congressional investigations. Trump will be represented at the impeachment hearing by well-known lawyers Kenneth Starr, Alan Dershowitz, Jane Ruskin and John Ratcliffe.