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Obama Tweets Jimmy Kimmel After Host’s Tearful Obamacare Plea

TheWrap logo TheWrap 5/2/2017 Reid Nakamura
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(Video provided by The Washington Post)

Barack Obama shared kind words for Jimmy Kimmel after the late-night host revealed on Monday that his newborn son had to undergo emergency heart surgery.

“Well said, Jimmy,” the former president wrote. “That’s exactly why we fought so hard for the ACA, and why we need to protect it for kids like Billy. And congratulations!”

In an emotional monologue on Monday’s show, the “Jimmy Kimmel Live” host revealed that his son William “Billy” Kimmel, who was born on Friday, April 21, had open heart surgery at Children’s Hospital Los Angeles after being diagnosed with a heart disease that blocked his pulmonary valve.

“He appeared to be a normal, healthy baby until about three hours after he was born,” Kimmel said. He added that a very attentive nurse at Cedars-Sinai Hospital in Beverly Hills heard a murmur in his heart and saw he was purple.

“They did some magic that I couldn’t even begin to explain,” the host said. “It was a success, and it was the longest three hours of my life.” Obama and Jimmy Kimmel in 2016 © Randy Holmes/ABC via Getty Images Obama and Jimmy Kimmel in 2016

Kimmel closed the monologue by praising the Affordable Care Act and calling on Americans to rise above party lines to protect access to healthcare in America.

“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. “You know, 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.”

“Whatever your party, whatever you believe, whoever you support, we need to make sure that the people who are supposed to represent us, people who are meeting about this right now in Washington, understand that very clearly,” he said.

“Let’s stop with the nonsense. This isn’t football. There are no teams. We are the team. It’s the United States. Don’t let their partisan squabbles divide us on something every decent person wants. We need to take care of each other.”

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