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Former Oregon Project coach Alberto Salazar Photo: Doug Pensinger/Getty Images

Nike announced plans to investigate its shuttered distance running program, the Oregon Project, after athlete Mary Cain's op-ed in the New York Times spurred harsh criticism and concern, reports the Washington Post.

Why it matters: In a video published on Friday, Cain characterized a "systemic crisis in women's sports and at Nike." Thereafter, several former members of the Oregon Project corroborated Cain’s accounts or shared their own stories. The Oregon Project shut down when the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency banned coach Alberto Salazar, per the New York Times.

What they're saying: Nike released a statement saying Cain's allegations are "completely inconsistent with our values," and they always try to put the athlete first, per the Post.

  • "These are deeply troubling allegations which have not been raised by Mary or her parents before. Mary was seeking to rejoin the Oregon Project and Alberto’s team as recently as April of this year and had not raised these concerns as part of that process.
  • "We take the allegations extremely seriously and will launch an immediate investigation to hear from former Oregon Project athletes. At Nike we seek to always put the athlete at the center of everything we do, and these allegations are completely inconsistent with our values."

Cain tweeted her reaction to Nike's statement, responding to the company's claim that she met with Salazar in the spring of this year.

"We quickly fell out of touch this summer, and that made the rose color glasses finally fall off. He didn’t care about me as a person; only as the product, the performer, the athlete. Then, after the USADA report dropped, I felt this quick and sudden sense of release."

Context per Axios' Fadel Allassan: An all-male coaching staff, widely considered the best in the U.S., continually pressured Cain to lose weight, per Cain. When she didn't, Salazar would publicly shame her.

Go deeper:

Go deeper

45 mins ago - World

Scoop: Blinken protests Israel settlements approval in "tense" phone call

Benny Gantz (L) and Tony Blinken. Photo: Jacquelyn Martin/Pool/AFP via Getty

Secretary of State Tony Blinken protested the decision to approve 3,000 new housing units in Israeli settlements in the occupied West Bank during a tense phone call on Tuesday with Israeli Defense Minister Benny Gantz, three Israeli officials tell me.

Why it matters: This is the first time new construction in the settlements has been approved since President Biden assumed office, and the Biden administration had been privately pressing the Israeli government not to proceed.

Senate Democrats unveil new income tax for billionaires

Sen. Ron Wyden. Photo: Drew Angerer/Getty Images

Senate Democrats on Wednesday released a billionaires' tax proposal, designed to help support President Biden's social spending and climate change legislation.

Why it matters: Sen. Ron Wyden (D-Ore.), chairman of the Senate Finance Committee, said the Billionaires Income Tax would raise "hundreds of billions of dollars" and would affect approximately 700 taxpayers who have more than $1 billion in assets or incomes of over $100 million a year.

The startup that wants to disrupt big internet providers

Illustration: Maura Losch/Axios

A new startup backed by funding from AOL founder Steve Case and Laurene Powell Jobs wants to break up broadband monopolies across the country.

Why it matters: Internet access has been crucial during the pandemic, but it's not ubiquitous, and it can be both slow and unaffordable in swaths of the country.