The Corner

Good Thing It Was Only 5

Jonah, NRO readers should be thankful John Kerry has just

five bills to his credit during his 20-year Senate career. The

potential cost of a mountain of legislation pushed through by an energetic

Senator Kerry is frightening to contemplate.

Take one example, health care costs. Senator Kerry cosponsored

Senator Tom Daschle’s S.1833, the Healthcare Equality and Accountability

Act. This legislation would codify Clinton Executive Order 13166, which

created a civil right to free translation services at taxpayer expense.

A fellow cosponsor of S.1833, Senator

Hillary Rodham Clinton admitted that this legislation would also

increase translation costs and impose new racial quotas on medical care

providers:

Remove language and cultural barriers. Because language and cultural

differences create barriers to health care, the bill would help patients

from diverse backgrounds, including those with limited English proficiency,

with provisions such as codifying existing standards for culturally and

linguistically appropriate health care, assisting health care professionals

in providing cultural and language services, and increasing federal

reimbursement for these services.

• Improve workforce diversity. The bill would expand existing programs and

create new ones to address the shortage of minority health care providers

and researchers. Increasing the number of minority health care providers

can help promote trust and improve outreach efforts to minority and

underserved communities.

Tonight’s debate moderator Bob Schieffer might have asked

Kerry about the likely cost of this legislation during his endless

questions about health care.

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