UpNorthNews Radio with Pat Kreitlow

Host: Pat Kreitlow

News | News Commentary

“UpNorthNews Radio with Pat Kreitlow” is Wisconsin’s new home for daily conversations about the state’s latest headlines and stories. It’s a radio extension of what UpNorthNews founding editor Pat Kreitlow premiered in January 2020 as a website, social media posts, and a daily newsletter—a place for fact-based news coverage that is informative, conversational, and not afraid to stand for something. While dedicated to Wisconsin hometown radio, the daily UpNorthNews Radio program can also be heard live on multiple online platforms. Pat is a longtime Wisconsin journalist and former state legislator who lives in and produces the show from along Lake Wissota in Chippewa Falls.

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Of Course They’re Proposing a Poll Tax (Hour 2)

Did you have a space for “Proposing a Poll Tax” on your Wisconsin Legislature Bingo card? Fill it in because two Republican lawmakers are introducing the latest measure designed to restrict voting rights—something no other political party in the developed world is trying to do. Also, Joe Zepecki has analysis of President Biden’s State of the Union address and the benefits to Wisconsin from his proposals.


  • Motherhood Monday
  • Dr. Kristin Lyerly

Pocan, the President, and Promises Kept (Hour 1)

Congressman Mark Pocan talks about accompanying President Biden on Air Force One during Wednesday’s trip to Wisconsin—and about the diminished expectations he has for the new GOP-controlled House. Courier Newsroom national correspondent Keya Vakil helps us review some ideas in Biden’s State of the Union address that didn’t receive as much coverage but still have a big impact on the lives of Americans.

The Power of Someone Believing in You

This week’s Hometown Health segment with Dr. Kristin Lyerly features her mentor, Dr. Pat McBride—whose autobiography looks back on his days as the first ballboy for the Milwaukee Brewers as well as his time in the locker room with the Bucks and the Packers, plus the ups and downs of growing up in a well-known but dysfunctional family, his journey to med school, and becoming a nationally recognized leader in public health.


  • Keya Vakil, Dan Schumacher

Bipartisan Support for Prescription Relief (Hour 2)

For millions of Americans, some kind of illness or chronic condition creates a lifetime reliance on certain medications. Drug companies sometimes offer discounts in the form of coupons, but some health insurance companies refuse to let the patients’ coupons count as part of their deductible. We talk to three members of a bipartisan coalition that wants the Wisconsin Legislature to join several other states that allow this kind of co-pay assistance.


  • Joe Zepecki
  • Hometown Health with Dr. Kristin Lyerly

Biden’s Surprising Rope-a-Dope (Hour 1)

It was one for the ages when it comes to State of the Union speeches, as President Joe Biden welcomes the heckling of rambunctious Republicans before turning their jeers into a public promise not to cut vital programs as part of a budget deal. We’ll review the speech and the sad, dark vision provided by Sarah Huckabee Sanders in the GOP response.

The Special Congressional Committee on Tinfoil Hats (Hour 2)

Surprising no one, Sen. Ron Johnson has been announced as one of the first to testify to the House Republicans’ new special committee dedicated to conspiracy theories, the Deep State, Hunter Biden’s laptop computer, horse dewormer as a COVID treatment, gas stoves, M&M’s, and now Chinese balloons. We’ll preview this week’s opening act of this made-for-TV panel.

Would You Trust Your Retirement Account to Mike Pence? (Hour 1)

It’s time to retire the phrase, “They’re saying the quiet parts out loud,” as Republicans no longer bother to hide the ideas that the public continues to reject—like turning Social Security into more of a gamble than the earned benefit it should always be. Former Vice President Mike Pence is the latest to attempt making snake oil sound as good as ice cream.

Clean Up Politics: Execute Corporate Personhood (Hour 2)

A couple of US Supreme Court decisions have done untold damage to American democracy by allowing corporations to have some of the same free speech rights as you, an actual human being. The firehose of corporate and billionaire dollars will flood our elections until we fix the US Constitution. It’s a years-long, uphill process, but it’s the only way forward. George Penn of United to Amend outlines the problems, the solution, and what you can do to help.

Balloons and Buffoons (Hour 1)

Did you notice an entire class of politicians seemed to lose their damn minds all at once? We’ll review the mass “outrage” over a balloon. A balloon. Also, Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis is demanding records of menstrual cycles from young girls competing in sports, which is not at all creepy and in line with the “big government” image Republicans claim to be against when they’re not in control of the government.

Mussolini, On-Time Trains, and the New York Times (Hour 2)

It’s a lie that the Italian dictator actually made sure the trains out of Rome began running on time again, but the myth lives on. It’s a lesson to remember when the New York Times is running with headlines praising Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis for “taking on the education establishment”—when he’s really trying to erase Black history from classrooms. We’ll talk to Mark Jacob about media coverage of this week’s top stories.


  • George Penn of “United to Amend”