Kevin Fischer is a veteran broadcaster, the recipient of over 150 major journalism awards from the Milwaukee Press Club, the Wisconsin Associated Press, the Northwest Broadcast News Association, the Wisconsin Bar Association, and others. He has been seen and heard on Milwaukee TV and radio stations for over three decades. A longtime aide to state Senate Republicans in the Wisconsin Legislature, Kevin can be seen offering his views on the news on the public affairs program, "InterCHANGE," on Milwaukee Public Television Channel 10, and heard filling in on Newstalk 1130 WISN. He lives with his wife, Jennifer, and their lovely young daughter, Kyla Audrey, in Franklin.
A look back at the people and events that made news the past week. Week-ends is a regular weekly feature of This Just In...
HEROES OF THE WEEK
3 WI National Guardsmen
Robert and Patricia Kern
Parents of Glastonbury teens
This one's not a slam dunk, but I'm tossing in this week anyway.
VILLAINS OF THE WEEK
The Seattle City Council
University of Colorado Boulder
QUOTES OF THE WEEK
"This is not about blame—this is about accountability, transparency, and fairness for the American public. The broken promises are many. We still don't know the real picture as the administration appears allergic to transparency and continues to withhold enrollment figures. This is more than a Web site problem. The Web site should have been the easy part. I’m also concerned about what happens next. Will enrollment glitches become provider payment glitches? Will patients show up at their doctor’s office or hospital only to be told that they aren’t covered, or even in the system?”
Rep. Fred Upton, the Michigan Republican who chairs the House Energy and Commerce Committee that held a hearing this week on the problems with the Obamacare rollout.
“Three weeks after the Web site went live, we are still hearing reports of significant problems. These problems need to be fixed, and they need to be fixed fast.”
Representative Diana DeGette, Democrat of Colorado
“We made everyone aware of the risks that we saw.”
Andrew M. Slavitt, the UnitedHealth executive responsible for Quality Software Services, said his company had frequently told the Obama administration that it saw risks in starting operation of the federal Web site on Oct. 1.
“Nearly 20 million Americans, in fact, have visited the Web site since it opened three weeks ago, but only about 500,000 managed to complete applications for insurance coverage. And an even smaller subset of those applicants actually obtained coverage. For the first time in history, a president has had to stand in the Rose Garden to apologize for a broken Web site.”
The NY Times
“Jeanne Shaheen doesn't sound like a Democrat who just won a government-shutdown ‘victory.’ Ms. Shaheen sounds like a Democrat who thinks she's going to lose her job.
“The New Hampshire senator fundamentally altered the health-care fight on Tuesday with a letter to the White House demanding it both extend the ObamaCare enrollment deadline and waive tax penalties for those unable to enroll. Within nanoseconds, Arkansas Sen. Mark Pryor had endorsed her ‘common-sense idea.’ By Wednesday night, five Senate Democrats were on board, pushing for . . . what's that dirty GOP word? Oh, right. ‘Delay.’
“After 16 long days of vowing to Republicans that they would not cave in any way, shape or form on ObamaCare, Democrats spent their first post-shutdown week caving in every way, shape and form. With the GOP's antics now over, the only story now is the unrivaled disaster that is the president's health-care law.”
The Wall Street Journal
“We should not lose The Headline in the day-to-day headlines. This is big history, not small. The ObamaCare rollout is a disaster for the White House, not a problem or a challenge or an embarrassment, not a gaffe or a bad few weeks. It is a political disaster, and the only question is whether it is partially recoverable, meaning the system can be made to work in a generally satisfactory way in the next few weeks. But—it has to be repeated—they had 3½ years after passage of the Affordable Care Act to make the program into something the American people could register for and feel they were benefiting from. Three and a half years! They had a long-declared start date: It would all go live Oct. 1, 2013, and everyone in the government, every contractor and consultant, knew it. The president put the meaning of his presidency into the program—it informally carries his name, it is his brand. It was unveiled with great fanfare, and it didn't work. For almost anybody. Crashed systems, frozen screens, phone registration that prompted you back to the site that sent you to the 800 number, like a high-tech Möbius strip.
“All this from the world's greatest, most technologically sophisticated nation, the one that invented the computer and the Internet. And from a government that is able to demand and channel a great deal of the people's wealth.
“So you'd think it would sort of work. And it didn't. Which is a disaster.”
Columnist Peggy Noonan
"Five days before the launch, the president said it’s a website where you can compare and purchase affordable health care plans, the same way you shop for a plane ticket on Kayak. Who misled him? Who misled the president on this? Are you telling me five days before that somebody let the president go out to the American public to give this speech and say this and make this promise? In fact, the next line is: I promise you, this is a lot easier, it’s like booking a hotel or plane ticket. Who let him down?"
NBC's Chuck Todd questioning President Obama's press secretary Jay Carney.
“The actual effects of the government shutdown have been overstated, as probably has the long-term damage to the Republican Party.”
Christian Schneider, Journal Sentinel columnist and blogger
“That's what happens when I talk too long.”
President Barack Obama after he helped a pregnant woman who began to faint during his speech about health care reforms Monday. Obama reached out to catch prospective Affordable Care Act beneficiary Karmel Allison who was standing directly behind him as he discussed the glitches of the new healthcare website in the Rose Garden of the White House.
"I don't remember my daughter playing soccer, playing youth soccer, one summer. I don't remember that. I got a pretty good memory, and I have a tendency like we all do to say, 'Where are my glasses?' and they're on your head. This was pretty shocking to me that I couldn't remember my daughter playing youth soccer, just one summer, I think. I remember her playing basketball, I remember her playing volleyball, so I kind of think maybe she only played a game or two. I think she played eight. So that's a little bit scary to me. For the first time in 44 years, that put a little fear in me."
"There's nothing wrong with me or my shape or who I am. You're the one with the problem."
OUTRAGE OF THE WEEK
US spent $3.7 trillion in welfare the past 5 years.
Washington's open secret.
MOST UNDER-REPORTED STORY OF THE WEEK
Medicaid and ObamaCare.
The real War on Women.
MOST OVER-HYPED STORY OF THE WEEK
The ObamaCare mess, and rightfully so.
STRANGEST, MOST UNUSUAL STORY OF THE WEEK
Slippin' and a slidin'.
He kept a hairy vow.
Dealing with the DMV.