“I had an interesting day today, I’ll tell ya,” offered Jimmy Kimmel.
The Jimmy Kimmel Live! host opened his monologue late Wednesday night by addressing the Graham-Cassidy health care bill, a proposed piece of legislation by Sen. Bill Cassidy (R-LA) and Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC) that would replace Obamacare.
Graham-Cassidy has proven very controversial because, since it wasn’t finalized until late last week and its deadline is Sept. 30, the bipartisan Congressional Budget Office (CBO) was not given enough time to do a proper score (previous bills had been haunted by poor CBO scores revealing that tens of millions of Americans would lose health care coverage under them). The CBO will attempt to provide what they are calling a “preliminary assessment” of the bill by early next week.
If that weren’t enough, one of the bill’s co-sponsors, Sen. Cassidy, went on CNN and said of any new proposed health care bill, “I ask, does it pass the Jimmy Kimmel test? Would the child born with a congenital heart disease be able to get everything she or he would need in that first year of life… even if they go over a certain amount?” Cassidy was, of course, referring to Kimmel’s tear-filled viral speech about the plight of his infant son, who was born with a congenital heart disease (Tetralogy of Fallot with pulmonary atresia) and nearly died. And his coining of the “Jimmy Kimmel test” landed Sen. Cassidy on Kimmel’s couch, where he promised to Kimmel’s face that any new health care bill would cover pre-existing conditions.
Well, he lied. The Graham-Cassidy health care bill would leave it to the states, who could then allow carriers to raise premiums to unaffordable rates due to pre-existing conditions. Insurance companies would also be allowed to cap the amount they’re willing to pay for treatment.
And Kimmel is pissed.
“So last night on our show, a senator from Louisiana, Bill Cassidy, I took him to task for promising to my face that he would oppose any health care plan that allowed insurance companies to turn people with pre-existing conditions away, and any health care plan that had an annual or lifetime cap on how much they would pay out for medical care,” said Kimmel on Wednesday.
“He said anything he supported would have to pass what he named ‘The Jimmy Kimmel Test,’ which was fine, it was good, but unfortunately—and puzzlingly—he proposed a bill that would allow states to do all the things he said he would not let them do. He made a total about-face, which means that he either doesn’t understand his own bill, or he lied to me. It’s as simple as that,” he added.
Kimmel’s Tuesday night monologue aimed at Sen. Cassidy led to Senators Cassidy and Graham taking to the airwaves to defend their bill. Sen. Cassidy appeared on CNN’s New Day, where he told host Chris Cuomo, “I’m sorry [Kimmel] does not understand,” while Sen. Graham, a vocal critic of Trump’s on cable news only, channeled his inner Trump, tweeting the following:
Cue Kimmel: “Oh, I get it. I don’t understand because I’m a talk-show host, right? Well then, help me out. Which part don’t I understand? Is it the part where you cut $243 billion from federal health care assistance? Am I not understanding the part where states would be allowed to let insurance companies price you out of coverage for having pre-existing conditions? Maybe I’m not understanding the part of your bill in which federal funding disappears completely after 2026? Or maybe it was the part where the plans are no longer required to pay for essential health benefits, like maternity care or pediatric visits?”
“Or the part where the American Medical Association, The American College of Physicians, The American Academy of Pediatrics, The American Hospital Association, The American Cancer Society, The American Diabetes Association, The American Heart Association, Lung Association, Arthritis Foundation, Cystic Fibrosis, ALS, The National Multiple Sclerosis Society, and The March of Dimes, among many others, all vehemently oppose your bill?” he continued. “Which part of that am I not understanding? Or could it be, Senator Cassidy, that the problem is that I do understand, and that you got caught with your G-O-Penis out? Is that possible? Because it feels like it is.”
Kimmel thanked those who wished him goodwill over his health care stand, sharing their personal health care stories with the late-night host.
On the other end of the spectrum was Fox & Friends’ Brian Kilmeade, co-host of President Trump’s favorite news source, who remarked, “Sunday’s politically charged Emmys may have been the lowest-rated in history, but that’s not stopping Hollywood elites like comedian Jimmy Kimmel from pushing their politics on the rest of the country.”
That comment from Kilmeade made Kimmel go nuclear.
“Thanks, Brian. That was Brian Kilmeade. And the reason I found this comment to be particularly annoying is because this is a guy, Brian Kilmeade, who whenever I see him kisses my ass like a little boy meeting Batman,” said Kimmel. “He’s such a fan. I think he’s been to the show, he follows me on Twitter, he asked me to write a blurb for his book—which I did, he calls my agent looking for projects. He’s dying to be a member of the ‘Hollywood elite.’ The only reason he’s not a member of the ‘Hollywood elite’ is that no one will hire him to be one!”
“And you know, the reason I’m talking about this is because my son had an open-heart surgery and has to have two more, and because of that, I’ve learned that there are kids with no insurance in the same situation,” shared Kimmel. “I don’t get anything out of this, Brian, you phony little creep. Oh, I’ll pound you when I see you. That is my blurb—that would be my blurb for your next book: ‘Brian Kilmeade is a phony little creep.’”
In addition to Sen. Cassidy and Kilmeade, Kimmel also took shots at disgraced Gov. Chris Christie, as well as President Trump, who called Graham-Cassidy a “great bill.”
“There’s no way President Trump read this bill that he says is ‘great.’ He just wants to get rid of it because Obama’s name is on it,” said Kimmel. “The Democrats should just rename it ‘Ivankacare.’ Guaranteed he gets on board. Can you imagine President Trump sitting down to read a health care bill? It’s like trying to imagine a dog doing your taxes. It just doesn’t compute.”