The story of his baby son's heart condition has, amazingly, managed to attract critics.
Jimmy used that monologue to address the recent healthcare bill that, at the time, hadn’t passed the House of Representatives.
“We were brought up to believe that we live in the greatest country in the world, but until a few years ago, millions and millions of us had no access to health insurance at all,” he said. “Before 2014, if you were born with congenital heart disease like my son was, there was a good chance you’d never be able to get health insurance because you had a pre-existing condition. You were born with a pre-existing condition. And if you didn’t have medical insurance, you might not live long enough to even get denied because of a pre-existing condition. If your baby is going to die and it doesn’t have to, it shouldn’t matter how much money you make.”
Jimmy’s speech touched millions of Americans but, of course, there were some naysayers—and he addressed them on Monday night’s show. First, Jimmy thanked people for their outpouring of support and then directly addressed his critics who, among other things, said he told “obscene lies about kids and medical care” and called him an “elitist creep.”
“I can’t count the number of times I’ve been called an ‘out of touch Hollywood elitist creep’ this week,” he said, joking that he appreciates it because, “when I was a kid, we had to drink powdered milk because we couldn’t afford the liquid variety.”
And then he issued a sarcastic mea culpa. “I’d like to apologize for saying that children in America should have health care,” he said. “It was insensitive, it was offensive, and I hope you can find it in your heart to forgive me.”
Jimmy’s first guest was Bill Cassidy, a Republican senator from Louisiana, who came up with the “Kimmel test” for the new health care bill, which is expected to be completely overhauled by the Senate. Under the test, no people with preexisting conditions should be excluded from receiving health insurance, he said. However, the senator also pointed out that paying to allow everyone to have access to healthcare costs money. Jimmy’s response: “I can think of a way to pay for it—don’t give a huge tax cut to millionaires like me and instead leave it how it is.”
The healthcare bill designed to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act passed the House of Representatives last week, with several controversial elements, including one that would allow states to decide whether health insurance companies are required to cover people with preexisting conditions. Several senators have vowed to completely overhaul the bill.
Check out Jimmy’s full monologue here: