Graham: Kimmel bought liberal talking point 'hook, line and sinker'

Sen. Lindsey GrahamLindsey Olin GrahamGraham emerges as go-to ally for Biden's judicial picks This Thanksgiving, skip the political food fights and talk UFOs instead Biden move to tap oil reserves draws GOP pushback MORE (R-S.C.) on Wednesday shot back at late-night host Jimmy Kimmel for his "unfair" criticism of Sen. Bill CassidyBill CassidySunday shows preview: New COVID-19 variant emerges; supply chain issues and inflation persist Legislators look to expand health care access through telehealth, biosimilars Infrastructure deal is proof that Congress can still do good, bipartisan work MORE (R-La.) and his involvement in the new GOP health-care bill, saying Kimmel likely read a "liberal talking point" before hastily attacking the lawmaker.

"I bet you he never called Sen. Cassidy and said 'would you please set this straight?' I bet he looked at some liberal talking point, bought it hook, line and sinker, and went after Bill Cassidy without talking to him, and I think that's unfair,” Graham said on "FOX & Friends."

ADVERTISEMENT

Graham said that their health-care bill will cover pre-existing conditions, while adding that he sympathized with Kimmel, whose child had been diagnosed with a heart condition shortly after birth. 

"I understand the emotional nature of having a sick child, and we're all grateful your child is doing well. Bill Cassidy is a doctor who worked in a nonprofit hospital serving the underprivileged. Factually, our bill requires pre-existing illnesses to be covered in the block grant," Graham said in part, adding that the bill would allow "50 states to come up with solutions to help sick people, not just some bureaucrat in Washington."

Kimmel took aim at Cassidy on Tuesday, saying the lawmaker lied when he promised an affordable health-care bill that would pass the “Jimmy Kimmel test.”

The comedian accused the Louisiana senator of failing to fulfill the promises he had made following Kimmel's emotional appeal in May to keep ObamaCare in place after his son's heart problem had been detected.

The measure, put forward by Cassidy, Graham and other Republican lawmakers, aims to give more power to states by converting ObamaCare funding for subsidies — which help people afford health-care coverage and pay for Medicaid expansion — into block grants to states.

Cassidy similarly insisted Wednesday that Kimmel does not fully understood the protections included in the Graham-Cassidy bill.

"I'm sorry he does not understand," Cassidy said Wednesday on CNN's "New Day," adding the bill protects "those with pre-existing conditions."