“One week ago tonight, I made an emotional speech that was seen by millions. And, as a result of my powerful words that night, Republicans in Congress had second thoughts about Repeal and Replace, they realized that what is right is right. I saved health insurance in the United States of America!” Jimmy Kimmel joked in his return to his ABC late-night show.
One week since Kimmel rebuked President Donald Trump’s efforts to slash health care, after revealing his newborn son’s open heart surgery, the ABC late-night host said he’s received “a humbling outpouring of support.”
“And thanks for all the supportive messages on Twitter and Facebook and whatever else there is. There was so much compassion and kindness – it was hard to even process.”
That said, he acknowledged, “and I know this is going to shock you – but there were also some who had not-so-nice things people said online.” That included some members of the media.
Kimmel read from the New York Post: “Jimmy Kimmel’s obscene lies about kids and medical care.”
Washington Times, meanwhile, contributed an editorial: “Shut up, Jimmy Kimmel, you elitist creep.”
“I can’t count the number of times I’ve been called an ‘out of touch Hollywood elitist, creep’ this week,” Kimmel said, adding that he appreciates the tag because, “when I was a kid, we had to drink powdered milk because we couldn’t afford the liquid variety.”
There are some very sick and sad people out there,” Kimmel marveled. “Here’s one of them. His name is Newt Gingrich.” The former House Speaker weighed in last week on Kimmel’s remarks about his son and the state of health care, explaining that late night comics aren’t funny any more because Hollywood is so enraged at Donald Trump that all they have is pure anger.
Kimmel noted Gingrich knows a thing or two about comedy, being the guy who helped lead the impeachment effort against Bill Clinton for trying to cover up his affair, while Gingrich himself was having an affair.
“Anyway – I’d like to apologize for saying that children in America should have health care. It was insensitive – it was offensive – and I hope you can find it in your heart to forgive me,” Kimmel told viewers.
His first guest Monday, speaking to Kimmel via satellite, was Sen. Bill Cassidy from Louisiana – a Republican, who came up with a test for the new health care bill. The retired gastroenterologist’s health care overhaul plan passes the “Kimmel test” in that it would bar the exclusion of people with preexisting conditions, Cassidy says.
In a passionate plea last Monday, Kimmel argued, “If your baby is going to die, and it doesn’t have to, it should not matter how much money you make. I think that’s something, whether you’re Republican or a Democrat … we all agree on that, right? Whatever your party … we need to make sure people who are supposed to represent us, people who are meeting about this right now in Washington, understand that very clearly.
“Let’s stop this nonsense. This isn’t football; there are no teams. We are the team — it’s the United States. Don’t let their partisan squabbles divide us on something every decent person wants.”