Jimmy Kimmel gives update on son, fires back at media

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Alex Stedman

Variety.com

LOS ANGELES — A week after making headlines with an impassioned healthcare argument, invoking his newborn son who recently underwent open-heart surgery, Jimmy Kimmel returned to his show Monday night, providing an update on his family and commenting on the GOP's recent healthcare vote.

"One week ago tonight, I made an emotional speech -- that was seen by millions -- and as a result of my powerful words, Republicans in Congress had second thoughts about repeal and replace, they realized that what is right is right -- and I saved health insurance in America!

"Oh, I didn't? They voted against it anyway? I really need to pay more attention to the news," he said, according to a transcript obtained by Variety.

Kimmel took time to say that his son, Billy, is "doing very well," eating, sleeping, and getting bigger. He also thanked those who made donations to Children's Hospital Los Angeles since his speech, but also called out those who "had not-so-nice things to say online."

He pointed to a New York Post article with the headline "Jimmy Kimmel's obscene lies about kids and medical care," as well as a Washington Times article titled "Shut up, Jimmy Kimmel, you elitist creep."

"I can't even count the number of times I've been called an 'out of touch Hollywood elitist, creep' this week," he added. "Which - I have to say - I kind of appreciate because, when I was a kid, we had to drink powdered milk because we couldn't afford the liquid variety. Our orange juice came frozen out of a can, it would squeeze out."

"My father - on the rare occasion we took a family trip - would hide our dog in the car and then smuggle it into the motel room to avoid paying a two-dollar pet fee. So after that, my dream was to become an 'out of touch Hollywood elitist.' And I guess it came true," he said.

The host went on to offer a less-than-sincere apology for his speech: "Anyway, I'd like to apologize for saying that children in America should have health care. That was insensitive - it was offensive - and I hope you can find it in your heart to forgive me."

Kimmel then took aim at Newt Gingrich, showing a clip of the former Speaker of the House on "Fox News Sunday" rebuffing Kimmel's previous argument, noting that hospitals will not turn away a sick baby.

"Yes, it is true that, if you have an emergency, they will do an operation, and that's terrific if your baby's health problems are all solved during that one visit," Kimmel said. "The only problem is - that never, ever happens. "We've had a dozen doctor's appointments since our son had surgery. You have a cardiologist, a pediatrician, the surgeons, some kids need an ambulance to transport them - and that doesn't even count parents who have to miss work for all this stuff."

"Those details, Newt forgot to mention," he went on. "I don't know if the double layers of Spanx are restricting the blood flow to his brain."

Just last week, Trump and the GOP's healthcare plan passed the House and is now moving onto the Senate, a development that happened while Kimmel was taking a break from hosting.

In his original speech, Kimmel got teary-eyed as he described the complications of the birth of his son just 10 days prior. He broke down as he made a plea for politicians on both sides of the aisle to make sure Americans have access to healthcare, especially for those with pre-existing conditions.

"If your baby is going to die it shouldn't matter how much money you make," he said at the time.