On Ford’s allegation, she got to the crux of the matter: The witnesses that Ford named have no memory of such a party, and no one has come forward who does. (We will note that Kavanaugh categorically denied being at such a party before he knew what Ford’s friend, Leland Keyser, would say — taking a great risk unless he was sincere and truthful in his denial.) There are key gaps in Ford’s account, including not knowing how she got home from the party in question. She could have mentioned, but didn’t, that the FBI’s renewed background check she pushed for turned up no corroborating information.
Opponents of Judge Kavanaugh say that Republicans are brushing by Ford’s allegation. As Collins demonstrated, that’s not true. It’s simply that there isn’t enough evidence to credit her charge; in fact the evidence cuts the other way, even under the “more likely than not” standard that Collins set out. She spoke, with conviction, of how important she believes the Me Too movement is. But that doesn’t mean that every accusation must be believed, or the mere existence of an accusation should be enough to destroy someone’s reputation and career.