Olympics 2021 updates, NBA draft night, bipartisan infrastructure bill: 5 Things podcast

·9 min read

On today's episode of the 5 Things podcast: Bipartisan infrastructure bill advances to Senate debate. It may still face legislative hurdles, but could pump billions into infrastructure, from bridges to internet. Plus, USA TODAY Sports' Josh Peter reports from Tokyo, a growing share of Americans know someone who is transgender, we preview the NBA Draft and Lollapalooza is back.

Hit play on the player above to hear the podcast and follow along with the transcript below. This transcript was automatically generated, and then edited for clarity in its current form. There may be some differences between the audio and the text.

Taylor Wilson:

Good morning. I'm Taylor Wilson and this is 5 Things You Need to Know Thursday, the 29th of July 2021. Today, a step forward on that bipartisan infrastructure bill plus the latest from Tokyo and more.

Taylor Wilson:

Here are some of the top headlines.

  1. A tsunami watch has been issued for Hawaii after a large earthquake off the Alaskan peninsula. The US geological survey said the quake was magnitude 8.2.

  2. Tokyo has reported record coronavirus cases for two days in a row. Japan has seen relatively low cases and deaths from the virus compared to the hardest hit places on Earth, but its seven day rolling average is growing and now stands at 28 per 100,000 people nationwide and 88 in Tokyo. That's compared to 18.5 per 100,000 in the US.

  3. And the popular children's show Arthur is coming to an end. The series will wrap up a 25-year run next year.

Taylor Wilson:

The Senate cleared a major procedural hurdle on Wednesday advancing the bipartisan infrastructure bill to debate after weeks of negotiations.

Speaker:

The motion upon reconsideration is agreed to.

Taylor Wilson:

Republican Senator Rob Portman and Democrat Joe Manchin celebrated bipartisanship on Wednesday.

Rob Portman:

At a time when Washington seems broken, this group of members behind me came together along with others and decided we were going to do something great for our country. Every American believes that roads and bridges, ports and waterways, even our digital infrastructure needs to be updated. They know it because they travel on those roads, go to those bridges, deal with the challenges of not having wifi to be able to do your schoolwork or your work or get your healthcare. So, people know that.

Joe Manchin:

We have not made a major investment in the infrastructure in United States of America for the last 30 years, first time. And when you see the bipartisanship here, bipartisanship is built because relationships. Relationships are built when there's trust. And the more we continue to do things such as this, the more you'll see more bipartisanship.

Taylor Wilson:

Senators voted to advance the bills 67 to 32, 21 centrist senators, including 11 Republicans and 10 Democrats have been trying to reach a compromise since President Joe Biden first unveiled his American Jobs Plan in April. But they've been mostly focused on traditional transportation infrastructure, not some of Biden's more ambitious proposals to address poverty, climate change and economic injustice. Progressives are still pushing for some of those aspects to be included as part of a larger compromise. As for the current bipartisan bill, it includes about $550 billion in new funding above what the federal gas tax and other fees are expected to generate over the next eight years. That includes billions for bridge repair and replacement and what the White House calls the biggest dedicated bridge investment since the Interstate Highway System was built in the 1950s. There are also billions to modernize Amtrak and increase high-speed rail availability, and money to rehabilitate clean water systems and expand broadband internet.

Taylor Wilson:

It would tackle climate change in some ways with smaller amounts of money on electric charging stations and on clean energy transmission. It's not clear if taxes would be raised to pay for the bill, but President Joe Biden said Wednesday that taxes would not be raised on people making less than $400,000 a year. Even if it does pass the Senate, the bill still faces hurdles in the house. Some Democrats, including House Speaker Nancy Pelosi have said they would not bring it to a vote unless the Senate also passes a resolution paving the way for that broader Democrat endorsed package on infrastructure spending that would reach some $3.5 trillion. Since that larger bill probably wouldn't get any GOP support, Dems would need to pass it through the reconciliation process.

It was another busy day at the Olympics on Wednesday. USA TODAY Sports' Josh Peter has the latest from Tokyo and what to look out for Thursday, US time.

Josh Peter:

Katie Ledecky won her first gold medal of the games. They came on the first ever women's 1500 freestyle swim and took a grueling 15 minutes and 37 seconds. Fellow American Erica Sullivan took the silver medal. The days of the United States being a lock for medal in swim relays are over. The American men finished fourth in the 4 by 100-meter freestyle relay. Americans Andrew Capobianco and Michael Hixon won the silver medal in the men's diving synchronized three meter springboard. US men's basketball is back in form with a 120-66 win over Iran. And given the team's recent struggles, it's okay to get a little excited about beating Iran. The US women win gold in three-on-three basketball's Olympic debut against the Russian Olympic Committee.

Josh Peter:

Let's move on from Wednesday and take a look at what's to come on Thursday. The women's gymnastics all around final is on Thursday. Jade Carey will replace Simone in the competition. Caeleb Dressel will be back in the pool and compete in the 100-meter freestyle final. BMX Racing and golf gets started on Thursday. World number 12 Patrick Reed replaced world number six Bryson DeChambeau who's unable to play due to a positive COVID test.

Taylor Wilson:

For all the latest, head to olympics.usatoday.com.

A growing share of U.S. adults say they know someone who is transgender or goes by gender-neutral pronouns. According to a new Pew Research Center survey, 42% of Americans said they know someone who is transgender. That's up five percentage points from 2017. About a quarter of Americans in the survey said they know someone who goes by gender-neutral pronouns like they/them. That increased eight percentage points since last surveyed in 2018. But the numbers on people's comfort level using gender-neutral pronouns are virtually unchanged according to the study. Half of Americans say they feel very or somewhat comfortable using gender-neutral pronouns, that's while 48% say they feel very or somewhat uncomfortable using them.

Taylor Wilson:

It's NBA Draft night. Some of the League's worst teams last year will get a crack at some of the best young talent coming in. First up, the Detroit Pistons are widely expected to take Oklahoma State Guard Cade Cunningham with the top pick. Then it'll be the Houston Rockets at number two, Cleveland Cavaliers at three, Toronto Raptors at four, and Orlando Magic at five. And after Cunningham presumably goes first overall, the rest of the order is kind of up for grabs. USA Today Sports' Scott Gleeson breaks down the 2021 class.

Scott Gleeson:

The NBA draft lottery has set the table for which team who will get the coveted number one pick, and that's going to be the Detroit Pistons. They are locked in here on Cade Cunningham, the Oklahoma State star who's a point guard ultimately at 6-foot-8. He just has phenomenal talent and he is a franchise-changing player. So Cade Cunningham, there's a lot here in the mock draft to be the number one pick. And that's because he can change teams ultimately just by doing so much on the offensive end. With his passing ability, he's very much so like Luka Doncic. We can see a big time change here for the Detroit Pistons in terms of what they can do with their franchise, getting Cade Cunningham with a lock here at the number one pick in the mock draft.

Scott Gleeson:

Checking in at number two in the mock draft, we've got Evan Mobley going to the Houston Rockets. And the big man from USC has franchise-changing potential, but he's not there yet. He's got to get more muscle and he's got to show that he can have a consistent jump shot, but really all the intangibles and essentially all of the upside is definitely there. Houston's in a situation where they could trade and look to get a different player, which means that then they could take Jalen Suggs. But ultimately right now, it's locked in on Evan Mobley, the number two spot.

Scott Gleeson:

If you're the Cleveland Cavaliers, then you have the number three spot. And you got Jalen Suggs still on the board, you have to pick him. He's the best player still left. But ultimately it doesn't matter what's going on with your team because Suggs is that good of a player. We barely just got a sample size of what he can do at Gonzaga and he got that team all the way to the national championship game. And really just showed how much he could do with his scrappiness. He's very surgical on the pick and roll. So we're thinking about Jalen Suggs, you have to take him if you're the Cavs or whichever NBA team it is because Suggs is just that good. Right now, we got him at the three spot in the mock draft.

Taylor Wilson:

You can watch the draft at 8:00 PM Eastern time, 5:00 Pacific on ESPN.

Lollapalooza is back. Crowds will return to Chicago's Grant Park on Thursday for the four day music festival. It's the first major multi-genre music festival since the pandemic slammed the US in March of 2020, and also the largest mass gathering in the country since that time with some 100,000 fans expected a day. Attendees must show proof that they're vaccinated against COVID-19 or they can show a negative test from the last three days. As for the music, Foo Fighters, Post Malone, Tyler the Creator and Miley Cyrus lead the lineup.

Taylor Wilson:

Thanks for listening to 5 Things. You can find us on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Stitcher, your smart speaker device, or wherever you find your audio. Thanks as always to Shannon Green and Claire Thornton for their great work on the show. And a reminder, we ask that you please drop us a rating and review if you have a chance. 5 Things is part of the USA TODAY Network.

This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Team USA updates Olympics 2021 in Tokyo, NBA Draft: 5 Things podcast