The popular nighttime talk show host gave a heartfelt plea to save affordable health insurance.
Jimmy Kimmel’s recent monologue to maintain affordable health care may have played a surprising role in the GOP Obamacare repeal efforts. The talk show host’s emotional speech caused him to choke up as he discussed his own newborn son’s congenital heart defect. His baby needed surgery shortly after he was born.
“No parent should ever have to decide if they can afford to save their child’s life,” he said.
“It just shouldn’t happen. Not here,” Kimmel added. His monologue occurred at a time when the latest Obamacare repeal efforts were picking up steam. The clip from the show, Jimmy Kimmel Live!, quickly went viral, making international headlines. The timing and genuine emotion from a beloved celebrity may have had a considerably larger impact than even Kimmel may have expected.
House Republicans have been attempting to claw their way into a position where they could have enough votes for their next health care bill. This is the latest effort to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act.
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The Kimmel speech to stop the Obamacare repeal even drew the attention of former President Barack Obama.
Obama (@BarackObama) tweeted “Well said, Jimmy. That’s exactly why we fought so hard for the ACA, and why we need to protect it for kids like Billy. And congratulations!” Hillary Clinton ((@HillaryClinton) also weighed in by adding her own tweet “Watch & prepare to tear up. Thanks Jimmy Kimmel for sharing your story & reminding us what’s at stake w/health care.”
Kimmel’s typical monologues are packed with jokes and sarcastic humor. That said, the comedian stepped away from that tradition to share a very serious description of his newborn son’s heart surgery. This choice to share a story from his personal life is very rare on Jimmy Kimmel Live!
Kimmel took great care to point out that before the Affordable Care Act, “if you were born with congenital heart disease, like my son was, there was a good chance you would never be able to get health insurance because you had a pre-existing condition.” According to PolitiFact, the Obamacare repeal currently sought by Republicans would reduce consumer coverage for people with pre-existing conditions.