Jimmy Kimmel's Bizarre Interview With Mike Lindell Baffles Viewers, Sparks Controversy

Jimmy Kimmel is in the midst of controversy after he invited MyPillow CEO Mike Lindell onto his late-night talk show. Lindell, a close ally of former President Donald Trump who has spent months pushing unfounded claims of election fraud, appeared on Jimmy Kimmel Live Wednesday night, where Kimmel introduced him as "a simple pillow salesman from Minnesota" who somehow "got to the bottom of the deepest conspiracy in the history of American politics."

The bizarre interview kicked off with comedian James Adomian limping onstage limping as MyPillow guy stage wearing a "Who Farted" tank top and a bandage on his head. After the humorous moment, the real Lindell was introduced, and the duo sat down for a 20-minute discussion, during which Lindell spoke about his past drug addiction and Kimmel suggested he has a lot in common with current President Joe Biden's son Hunter Biden. At one point, Kimmel said he worries about Lindell, stating, "I feel like you are maybe self-destructive." He also attempted to get to the bottom of Lindell's election fraud claims.

"That's right, I've been working hard on this election and the machines," Lindell said in part, referring to his unfounded claim that voting machines, mainly Dominion machines, rigged the election. Kimmel said he doesn't believe "there's any validity to any of this stuff that you're saying," adding that "a lot of these ideas you espouse, I think you could potentially draw a line from those to the riot we had at the Capitol where people were killed and a lot of bad things." Lindell attempted to distance himself from the Capitol riot and continued discussing "the machines."

The interview, which had already sparked backlash prior to its airing, generated plenty of chatter on social media. Just prior to the new episode, one person wrote, "I love Jimmy Kimmel, but will NOT watch his Wednesday show. There's no reason to have Mike Lindell on." During the episode, one person said they were "Sitting here trying to stomach Jimmy Kimmel until Mike Lindell comes on. Finally had to mute it."

After Kimmel first suggested that Lindell may make an appearance on his show, the political watchdog group Common Cause posted a letter to its website addressed to Kimmel and the production team of the ABC series stating that having the CEO "on your show will give him a bigger platform to spread his lies and disinformation, and knowingly mislead the public about the integrity of our election systems" and "even joking about his conspiracy theories can lead to the spread of disinformation." The group asked, "that you immediately cancel his scheduled appearance."

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During the segment, Kimmel addressed the backlash, noting that "a lot of people didn't want you to come on the show. Liberals and conservatives, everybody said, told me, don't have you on the show, and they told you, don't go on the show." He said he thought "it's important that we talk to each other."