WATCH LIVE | Trump impeachment trial: Senate to debate rules, procedures ahead of opening statements

Washington D.C. Bureau

WASHINGTON (WFLA) – President Donald Trump’s impeachment trial in the Senate begins in earnest this week after last week’s ceremonial beginning.

The Senate is expected to convene at 12:30 p.m. ET on Tuesday to debate the rules and procedures of the impeachment trial. Once the Senate votes on those rules and procedures, the trial will begin in earnest. Opening statements are expected to be delivered on Tuesday or Wednesday.

The Senate took its first steps to become an impeachment court last week after the House officially signed and handed over the articles of impeachment against the president on Wednesday. The seven House impeachment managers walked to the Senate on Thursday afternoon to formally read the articles. Later in the day, Chief Justice John Roberts was sworn in to preside over the trial and, in turn, swore in the senators serving as jurors.

President Trump issued a response to the articles of impeachment on Saturday, calling them a “dangerous attack on the right of the American people to freely choose their president.” The response states both articles against the president should be rejected.

House impeachment managers filed what’s known as a replication on Monday, responding to the president’s answer and denying his defense.

“The American people entrusted President Trump with the extraordinary powers vested in his Office by the Constitution, powers which he swore a sacred Oath to use for the Nation’s benefit,” the replication states. “President Trump broke that promise. He used Presidential powers to pressure a vulnerable foreign partner to interfere in our elections for his own benefit.”

Also on Monday, President Trump’s legal team filed a trial memorandum calling the articles of impeachment “an affront to the Constitution and to our democratic institutions.” The 171-page memorandum argues against the impeachment and calls for immediate acquittal.

We will be bringing you complete coverage of the Senate trial every step of the way. Our coverage starts Tuesday at 12:20 p.m. ET with JB Biunno and Evan Donovan.

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