Jimmy Kimmel jumped back into the health care debate on Monday night to celebrate the dim prospects for the Graham-Cassidy bill.
The late-night host said while he was traveling to three cities over the weekend, “strangers wanted to tell me that the Affordable Care Act — that our president and half our senators are so desperately trying to kill — saved or drastically improved their lives, members of their family’s lives, and/or their children’s lives,” he said.
“They came to me and said Mr. Fallon, thank you for speaking out,” he joked. But he added that many who thanked him for speaking out against the bill were Republicans.
Kimmel went on to thank Republican Sen. John McCain for going “Red Wedding” on the Trumpcare bill, saying the Arizonan “probably saved the Republican Party by doing this.”
“Just about an hour and a half ago, one of the two key Republican holdouts — Susan Collins — the senator from Maine, said she would not support Graham-Cassidy,” he said. “Which means, this bill is almost certainly dead. Or at the very least it’s on life support, which isn’t covered.
“So that is great news. Thank you Sen. Collins … And the best news is, now I can go back to talking about the Kardashians,” he added. “Guys, Kylie’s pregnant!”
Earlier on Monday, Kimmel tweeted: “Thank you @SenatorCollins for putting people ahead of party. We are all in your debt.”
Collins joins McCain and Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul as Republican “no” votes against the bill, which would repeal Obamacare. Their defections will likely prevent the party from hitting the 50 votes it needs to pass.
However, Republican Sen. Lindsey Graham vowed Monday to “press on,” calling the bill he has cosponsored a “damn good idea.”
“We are going to press on. It’s OK to vote. It’s OK to fall short, if you do, for an idea that you believe in,” he told CNN’s Jake Tapper and Dana Bash at a CNN town hall debate in Washington.
Kimmel began speaking out against Graham-Cassidy last week, when he said that Republican Sen. Bill Cassidy lied to him about his health care plans during a previous visit to “Jimmy Kimmel Live!”
He became part of the health care debate earlier this year when he announced that his newborn son, Billy, had undergone open-heart surgery. He stressed that he hoped every American family would have access to the same top-tier care that his family does.