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Supreme Court nominee Judge Brett Kavanaugh. Photo: Drew Angerer/Getty Images

The head of the all-girl private school attended by Christine Blasey Ford, the woman who has accused Brett Kavanaugh of assaulting her in high school, has circulated a statement to its alumnae in support of Ford, stating “As a school that empowers women to use their voices, we are proud of this alumna for using hers."

The backdrop: This comes a day after Ford, a 51-year-old research psychologist from California, went public about the alleged sexual assault — just days before the Supreme Court nominee was expected to be confirmed. Susanna Jones, Head of Holton-Arms School, said her statement is not connected with the school's alumnae office.

Dear Alumnae,

As many of you have heard, fellow alumna, Christine Blasey Ford ’84, has come forward with allegations that Supreme Court nominee Brett M. Kavanaugh sexually assaulted her when she was a teenager at which time she was a student at Holton-Arms.

Below is the School’s official statement on the matter:

In a recent article, The Washington Post describes an alleged assault of one of our alumnae by Supreme Court nominee Brett M. Kavanaugh that occurred in the early 1980s, while she was a student at Holton-Arms. In these cases, it is imperative that all voices are heard. As a school that empowers women to use their voices, we are proud of this alumna for using hers.

We have heard via individual communications and the Holton Alumnae Facebook page that Blasey Ford ’84 has received an outpouring of support from her fellow alumnae. This expression of solidarity is exactly what we would expect from the Holton sisterhood. We have also learned that some alumnae are circulating a letter in support of Blasey Ford. We applaud independent initiatives of this sort. However, please know that a group of alumnae initiated this communication independently, not the Holton Alumnae Office. As we said in the public statement, we commend Blasey Ford’s willingness to share her story; we also respect that there are a range of opinions about this situation.

In addition, we understand that the press has contacted a number of Holton alumnae. Please know that the School has not released any alumnae contact information to the press, nor would we ever do so without a person’s express permission. All media contact with the School is channeled through Director of Communications Ellen Hatherill.

Thank you for your continued support of your alma mater and your fellow alumnae.

Warm regards,

Susanna A. Jones
Head of School
Holton-Arms School

Go deeper

Symone Sanders leaving VP's office

Vice President Kamala Harris and her press secretary Symone Sanders. Photo: Alex Wong/Getty Images

Symone Sanders, senior advisor and chief spokesperson to Vice President Kamala Harris, is leaving the VP’s office by the end of this year, three White House officials told Axios on Wednesday.

Why it matters: The VP has faced an onslaught of criticism in her first year centered on her leadership and staff, adding to the suggestion, she’s not the Democratic Party’s preferred nominee for 2024.

Bryan Walsh, author of Future
Updated 1 hour ago - Health

Omicron travel bans are sign of what's to come

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

The travel bans and border closures prompted by the Omicron variant likely won't fully prevent its spread, but that won't stop countries from leaning on the measures.

Why it matters: The rapid speed at which countries turned to travel bans with the emergence of Omicron indicates border controls will increasingly become a weapon against infectious disease — whether or not public health experts agree they are effective.

2 hours ago - Politics & Policy

GOP fights itself on shutdown politics

Reporters question Senate Minority Whip John Thune before the Republican Party's weekly lunch on Tuesday. Photo: Kent Nishimura/Los Angeles Times via Getty Images

GOP leaders on Capitol Hill are scrambling to reach a deal with a bloc of 15 Senate Republicans threatening a government shutdown to force a fight over the Biden administration's vaccine mandates.

Why it matters: The push to defund the mandates — by holding the short-term government funding bill hostageis largely symbolic, and highly controversial within the Republican Party. A shutdown as early as midnight Friday could trigger everything from national park closures to delays in receiving Social Security checks.

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