Jimmy Kimmel says he lost fans over Donald Trump criticisms

Late-night host Jimmy Kimmel has made it clear he’s not a fan of former President Donald Trump, with years of monologues and sketches on ABC’s “Jimmy Kimmel Live!” But the comedian recently said he faces consequences.

On the latest episode of Stitcher’s Naked Lunch podcast, Kimmel spoke to hosts David Wild and Phil Rosenthal about his views on President #45 and brought those opinions to his late-night show.

“Does ABC ever say to you, ‘Hey, couldn’t you just hit this side and shut up for a little bit because we’re going to lose these people?'” Rosenthal asked.

“Like right at the start of this whole Trump thing … that was kind of implied,” Kimmel said. “But I just said, ‘Listen, I get it. I mean, I don’t disagree.’”

Kimmel said that he “lost half my fan base [base], maybe more than that” for his coverage of Trump, recalling that he was “the most popular talk show host” among Republican viewers before the former “Apprentice” star took office. He said he knew where ABC’s concerns were coming from, but he remained steadfast.

“I just said, ‘Look, if you want to do this, I understand and I don’t blame you, but I won’t do this,'” he told podcast hosts. “So, you know, if you want someone else to host the show, that’s fine. That’s OK. I’m just not going to do it like that.’”

Kimmel said the network accepted his terms, adding, “They knew I meant it.”

ABC officials did not immediately respond to the Times’ request for comment Thursday.

Rosenthal praised Kimmel and fellow late-night personalities Stephen Colbert and Seth Meyers for doing “public service” by being the “guys who make us feel like we’re not alone.”

Kimmel began shooting at Trump back in 2015 when he and his correspondent Guillermo poked fun at Trump’s foreign policy. And when Trump appeared on Jimmy Kimmel Live in May 2016, Kimmel poked fun at some of his controversial statements with a fake children’s book and criticized Trump’s proposed Muslim ban.

“Isn’t it un-American and wrong to discriminate against people because of their religion?” he asked Trump.

In 2017, Kimmel’s Beef got personal with the former president. In an emotional monologue, he revealed that his newborn son was born with an illness that affected his heart. In light of his son’s diagnosis, Kimmel said children would be badly affected by Trump’s proposed cuts to the National Health Institute. He then reiterated his health concerns in October 2020 ahead of the presidential election.

Kimmel kept up his digs throughout Trump’s administration and beyond. As recently as Tuesday, Kimmel slammed Trump for his endorsement of rapper Kanye “Ye” West and for Trump’s possible testimony for the Jan. 6 hearings.

“When Donald Trump takes an oath, it usually ends in divorce,” he said.

Kimmel told the Naked Lunch podcast that he believes Trump will be on the hook for the attack on the nation’s Capitol and that he “[wants] to be on the air when Donald Trump goes to jail.”

“I still believe that justice triumphs in America – and I know there have been a billion different examples to the contrary – but there just seemed to be too many different cases against him,” he said. “I mean, how can you commit so many crimes and be so unethical and so horrible and get away with it?”

https://www.latimes.com/entertainment-arts/tv/story/2022-11-03/jimmy-kimmel-donald-trump-lost-fans-criticism-abc Jimmy Kimmel says he lost fans over Donald Trump criticisms

Sarah Ridley

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