Hundreds of people packed four corners of a major Palo Alto intersection on Sunday night for a candlelight vigil in support of Christine Blasey Ford, a Palo Alto resident and university professor whose sexual assault allegations against Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh have thrown his confirmation into turmoil.
Women and men, mothers and daughters, teenagers, young children and community members stood at El Camino Real and Embarcadero Road, holding candles and signs that read "I believe her," "the truth always wins," and one large banner, simply, "bravery." The crowd joined in loud chants of "we are her; she is us" and "enough is enough" as cars driving by honked in support.
The vigil took place hours after Ford's lawyers confirmed that she will testify in front of the Senate Judiciary Committee on Thursday after days of back-and-forth negotiations. Kavanaugh, who has categorically denied her allegations, will testify after her.
Ford, a research psychologist at Palo Alto University, has alleged that at a party in suburban Maryland in the early 1980s, when they were both teenagers, Kavanaugh forced her into a room, groped her and covered her mouth when she tried to scream.
"Despite actual threats to her safety and her life, Dr. Ford believes it is important for senators to hear directly from her about the sexual assault committed against her," Ford's attorneys, Debra Katz, Lisa Banks and Michael Bromwich, said in a statement Sunday.
Also on Sunday, The New Yorker reported a second sexual misconduct allegation against Kavanaugh. Deborah Ramirez, who went to Yale University with Kavanaugh, told The New Yorker that he exposed himself at a drunken dormitory party, thrust his penis in her face and caused her to touch it without her consent as she pushed him away. Kavanaugh called the latest allegations "a smear, plain and simple."
"I look forward to testifying on Thursday about the truth, and defending my good name—and the reputation for character and integrity I have spent a lifetime building—against these last-minute allegations," he said in a statement.