This targeted middle-class tax went nowhere and was blasted by Paul Krugman in January 2007 after Bush emitted the right wing foolishness in his Saturday radio address before the '07 State of the Union address. Wrote Krugman in his "Gold-Plated Indifference" piece:
What’s really striking about Mr. Bush’s remarks, however, is the tone. The stuff about providing 'incentives' to buy insurance, the sneering description of good coverage as 'gold plated,' is right-wing think-tank jargon. In the past Mr. Bush’s speechwriters might have found less offensive language; now, they’re not even trying to hide his fundamental indifference to the plight of less-fortunate Americans.
As Republicans in Congress renew their near universal hostility to health reform, President Obama more frequently hits health insurance companies who have the "power to make arbitrary decisions about your health care," following September reassurances he will not raise taxes for anyone but the wealthiest Americans in this crazy system.
But as we enter the last stages of the health reform legislative process, many in Wisconsin want to know: Is my health plan considered 'gold-plated' and does Obama reject what Bush tried to do, tax my comprehensive health coverage?
Take Unity Health Insurance for example, an affiliate of the University of Wisconsin Hospital and Clinics. Is this what Bush called gold-plated and President Obama, will you promise not to tax this coverage like what Bush and the right-wing wanted?
Taxing or not taxing this insurance is not clear as a policy goal. Let's nail this down.