Accuracy in Media

Remember when the left went berserk because President Reagan eliminated the Fairness Doctrine – the FCC rule that required broadcast entities to give equal time to opposing political views?

ABC should be glad the rule was eliminated, or the network would have to give time to the Cassidy-Graham health care proposal under consideration in the Senate.

Every president gets heckled in late-night monologues. But with Jimmy Kimmel strongly backing Obamacare on air, it could put the show’s nonprofit status at risk.

What Kimmel did “would be grassroots lobbying,” said Sam Kazman an attorney with the Competitive Enterprise Institute, “but this activity by itself would be pretty small in scope, so it would probably not by itself cause them trouble.”

Were the Fairness Doctrine still in place, then the network would likely have to make good as a result of Kimmel’s actions.

Kimmel used his monologue in April to tell the story of his infant son, who was born with a heart problem and would likely require multiple heart surgeries. He also said that families might not have been able to afford this condition before Obamacare.

In July, he explained this again in the context of opposing Obamacare repeal proposals then before Congress.

His campaign culminated Tuesday night when he posted the Senate switchboard number on the screen and urged viewers to ask their senators to oppose Cassidy-Graham.

“He wasn’t very honest,” Kimmel led off by saying Tuesday night. He talked about the “Jimmy Kimmel test.” “There’s a new Jimmy Kimmel test … it’s called a lie detector test, and you’re welcome to stop by and take it

“There’s a new Jimmy Kimmel test … it’s called a lie detector test, and you’re welcome to stop by and take it anytime.”

“I don’t know what happened to Bill Cassidy,” Kimmel said. “But when he was on this publicity tour, he listed his demands for a health-care bill very clearly. These were his words. He said he wants coverage for all, no discrimination based on pre-existing conditions, lower premiums for middle-class families and no lifetime caps. Guess what? The bill does none of those.”

The senators said that Kimmel regurgitated Democrat talking points without checking them out.

“I don’t like the idea of calling this good man a liar without ever talking to him first,” Graham said. “That really says more about Mr. Kimmel than it does Dr. Cassidy.”

Kimmel’s final flourish, an attempt to block inevitable responses to his diatribe, showed how removed he is from the situation. He directly addressed criticism that he was politicizing his son’s health problems. 

“I am politicizing my son’s health problems … because I have to,” Kimmel said.

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