Here's something I never thought I'd say: Jimmy Kimmel very well may turn out to be the hero of 2017.
The late-night talk show host, whose son was born with a rare heart defect, has made it his mission to do everything in his power to protect Obamacare — including engaging in an incredibly public fight with the GOP and Fox News.
The latest saga began on Sept. 19, when Kimmel used the opening monologue of his show to openly condemn the latest "repeal and replace" effort, the Graham-Cassidy Bill, and slam Sen. Bill Cassidy for lying straight to his face about the so-called "Jimmy Kimmel Test." The test, which Cassidy himself came up with, was a promise that he'd "only support a healthcare bill that made sure a child like mine would get the health coverage he needs, no matter how much money his parents make." Not only did Cassidy throw his weight behind something that didn't pass the test, he wrote the damn thing himself — and Kimmel wasn't about to let that slide under the radar. The drama might, in an alternate universe, have ended there — but Cassidy instead chose to respond to Kimmel via CNN the following day, saying, "I'm sorry he does not understand."
On Sept. 20, Kimmel once again responded to Cassidy in his opening monologue.
"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 $240 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 don't understand 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?" Kimmel said, before moving on to encompass the larger GOP, saying, "Or could it be, Senator Cassidy, that the problem is that I do understand, and you got caught with your G-O-penis out. Is that possible? Because it feels like it is."
It didn't end there, though. He also had a bone to pick with Fox & Friends host Brian Kilmeade, who accused the comedian of being a member of the "Hollywood elite" and using his late-night platform to push his personal liberal agenda.
"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. 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 — and he calls my agent looking for projects. He's dying to be a member of the 'Hollywood elite,'" Kimmel said, making sure to add, "The only reason he's not a member of the 'Hollywood elite' is that no one will hire him to be one."
Watch the clip in full above (and savor the sick, sick burns while you're at it.) And you can bet that we'll continue to bring you the latest in the Jimmy Kimmel saga as the Graham-Cassidy Bill continues to work its way through Congress and Kimmel continues to be the hero that we never knew he was.