House hearings on Capitol riot begin in primetime, 'stagflation' explained: 5 Things podcast

·11 min read
Miss the Jan. 6 hearing? Here's what Bill Barr, Ivanka Trump, Capitol Police and others said

On today's episode of the 5 Things podcast: House hearings on Jan. 6 Capitol riot get underway in primetime

The former Proud Boys leader also faces federal conspiracy charges related to the attack. Plus, reporter Marina Pitofsky explains stagflation, reporter Amanda Pérez Pintado looks at why so many Gen Zers identify as LGBTQ, LIV Golf begins its first tournament amid controversy tied to Saudi funding and CMA Fest returns while banning Confederate flag imagery.

Podcasts: True crime, in-depth interviews and more USA TODAY podcasts right here.

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 9th of June, 2022. Today, primetime hearings on January 6th. Plus, a look at stagflation, and more.

Here are some of the top headlines:

  1. A man drove a car into a German school group in a popular Berlin shopping district yesterday. A teacher is dead and nine others are seriously injured.

  2. Thailand has made it legal to grow and possess marijuana. The country's government, though, says that smoking in public could still be punished.

  3. And the Boston Celtics have taken a 2 games to 1 lead in the NBA Finals. They beat the Golden State Warriors 116 to 100 last night off a great defensive performance and a combined 53 points from Jaylen Brown and Jayson Tatum. Game 4 is set for Friday night in Boston.

January 6th.

[Sounds from the Jan. 6, 2021, insurrection at the U.S. Capitol]

Taylor Wilson:

Four Proud Boys members and the group's former leader are expected to make their first court appearances today on federal charges of seditious conspiracy related to the deadly US Capitol attack on January 6th, 2021. The new charges billed on an earlier conspiracy case against the group's former chairman, Enrique Tarrio, along with Ethan Nordean, Joseph Biggs, Zachary Rehl, and Dominic Pazola. They're accused in an organized plot to prevent the certification of President Joe Biden's election.

Then tonight, the House committee investigating the attack will open a series of hearings with a rare primetime session beginning at 8:00 PM Eastern Time. Over the past year, the committee has interviewed more than 1,000 witnesses to learn what led to the riot, what exactly happened at the Capitol, and how the White House reacted. The AP's Mary Clare Jalonick has more.

Mary Clare Jalonick:

Biden won the election. There is no evidence anywhere that there was widespread fraud that could have overturned that result. Nonetheless, Trump has continued to say that he won and that Biden is not a legitimate president, and there are a large chunk of people who are supportive of Trump who still believe that. And so that is part of the reason that this committee really wants to... They're doing this hearing on Thursday in primetime because they want to try to get attention.

We know the basics of what happened on that day. It was on TV, it unfolded on television, but there's a lot of things behind the scenes that we still don't know. And the biggest question that they've been focused on is what Trump was doing during the riot and what he might have known about people who were coming to town, any links between the White House and the rioters, and especially what he was doing in those minutes and hours that the insurrection unfolded.

But even as people were breaking into the building, Trump was still tweeting, trying to get Pence to do what he wanted him to do, which was to try and overturn the legitimate election of Joe Biden.

There's a domestic extremism component that we're expecting to see in one of the hearings with a lot of the far-right groups, like the Oath Keepers and the Proud Boys, who were organizing to a large extent before the insurrection. So, I think we're going to see just all of those different factors, a lot of the unanswered questions about exactly how it went down, with their stated goal of getting that out there for history and having done the most comprehensive investigation possible so it doesn't happen again.

Taylor Wilson:

You can watch tonight's hearings across the usual major news networks, but not on Fox News, which will not air the hearings live.

Stagflation. You've maybe heard the term thrown around recently, but what exactly does it mean? 5 Things producer PJ Elliott spoke with USA TODAY reporter Marina Pitofsky for the answer, and to find out what it could mean for the future of the US economy.

Marina Pitofsky:

So, stagflation is a term that means the combination of sluggish economic growth and high inflation.

PJ Elliott:

What are experts saying about stagflation right now and how the economy is in the United States currently?

Marina Pitofsky:

So, Americans have been seeing significant inflation recently, and the World Bank downgraded its forecast, its expectations for the global economy in 2022. So, the combination of that obviously raises red flags for experts.

PJ Elliott:

So, what does all of this mean? What can Americans expect to see in the next few months or so?

Marina Pitofsky:

Yeah. So, stagflation being the combination of sluggish economic growth and high inflation, you can certainly see higher inflation. You can also see factors like high unemployment rates. We know that stagflation is often associated with the 1970s in the United States. And in every year from 1974 to 1982, inflation and unemployment in the US were both above 5%. Not that I'm forecasting that happening in the coming year, but that's an indicator we've seen in the past.

One thing that might be interesting is that there's not necessarily one step officials can take to solve stagflation, but in the 1970s, what we saw is that interest rates spiked so high in an effort to resolve stagflation that they did cause a period of recession in the United States. So, another potential factor to keep an eye on.

Taylor Wilson:

For Marina's full story, click the link in today's episode description.

Gen Z has grown up in an America that's more accepting of LGBTQ individuals, and there are more Gen Zers identifying as LGBTQ than ever before. PJ caught up with reporter Amanda Pérez Pintado with more.

Amanda Pérez Pintado:

A record 7.1% of adults in the US identify as LGBTQ, according to a recent Gallup poll. And that growth in number is being driven by young people, specifically Gen Z. So, about 21% Gen Zers, 10.5% millennials, 4.2 Generation X, and 2.6% baby boomers. And that number of overall adults who identify as LGBTQ in the US is expected to continue growing as more Gen Zers enter adulthood.

PJ Elliott:

So, why are there more Gen Zers that identify as LGBTQ now than any other generation?

Amanda Pérez Pintado:

So, there are several reasons or several factors as to why Gen Zers might feel more comfortable as identifying as LGBTQ compared to older generations. And one of them is that they were born in a time of greater acceptance of LGBTQ identities, thanks to the activism and the work that those previous generations put in. Another factor is technologies. So, especially the internet, social media, those tools have allowed younger people to access information and meet others like them without needing physical proximity.

But that rise in LGBTQ identities and that large percentage of Gen Zers who identify as LGBTQ doesn't necessarily mean, as one expert said, that they're free from oppression or challenges that are related to gender and sexuality. Today, young people are facing a wave of anti-trans bills, legislation similar to Florida's so-called Don't Say Gay law, as well as the possible overturning of Roe v. Wade. So, even though Gen Z has benefited from the sacrifices of previous generations, as one expert said, Gen Z still has a lot of work to do.

Taylor Wilson:

The opening event in the LIV Golf Invitational Series begins today in London, and that's despite major backlash against the new tour. Before the event, many of the 48 players in the field were asked about LIV Golf being financed by the sovereign wealth fund of Saudi Arabia. That includes its role in the killing of Washington Post journalist Jamal Khashoggi, among other atrocities. Saudi crown prince Mohammed bin Salman is the head of that fund. And according to US intelligence, he approved an operation that led to the killing of the Saudi journalist in 2018.

The Saudi government is also accused of other human rights violations, including laws against the LGBTQ community and rampant capital punishment. Some notable players competing in the inaugural event and tour are Dustin Johnson and Phil Mickelson. And Phil has added to the tournament's controversy with his public comments. He told golf writer Alan Shipnuck, "They're scary expletive to get involved with. We know they killed Khashoggi and have a horrible record on human rights. They execute people there for being gay. Knowing all of this, why would I even consider it? Because this is a once in a lifetime opportunity to reshape how the PGA Tour operates." He went on to say that the PGA Tour has been manipulative against players and that Saudi money has given them leverage. But For The Win's Andy Nesbitt said those comments, and Phil's decision to partner with Saudi money, could tarnish his career.

Andy Nesbitt:

His career, I can't believe what's happened to it in the last week and a half or so. Last May, he was winning the PGA championship at the age of 51. Everyone in golf loved him, fans, media players. "Oh my God, here's Phil, a leftie, winning in a major." And now here on this day, he sits alone, away from golf. He's taken some time to be with his family after saying, "I know those people over there, they kill journalists, they kill people for being gay, but here's why I want to join them, to help strengthen the PGA Tour." It was the most tone-deaf, disgusting statement he could have made. And thankfully, a lot of golfers, including Rory McIlroy and others, came out this past weekend and denounced what Phil had to say, told him that it was a dumb thing to say, and said they're not going to that league, thankfully. That league now is pretty much over, and Phil Mickelson's career and his legacy is tarnished forever.

Taylor Wilson:

As for other players, Graeme McDowell had this to say.

Graeme McDowell:

Take the Khashoggi situation, we all agreed that that was reprehensible. No one's going to argue that fact. But we're golfers, and speaking personally, I really feel like golf's a force of good in the world. I just try to be a great role model to kids. I know what the game of golf has taught me. And I love using the game of golf as something to help grow around the world. That's pretty much what we've done for the last 20 years, be role models to kids, try and use this game, like I say, as a force of good, really. So, we're not politicians. I know you guys hate that expression, but we're really not, unfortunately. And we're professional golfers. And if Saudi Arabia wanted to use the game of golf as a way for them to get to where they want to be, and they have the resources to accelerate that experience, I think we're proud to help them on that journey.

Taylor Wilson:

For more on LIV Golf, its controversies, and where the sport goes from here, head to USATODAY.com/sports.

After a two year hiatus for COVID-19, CMA Fest returns today in Nashville, hosted by the Country Music Association. And the festival is now banning Confederate flag imagery of any kind. The decision comes as many artists, advocates, and industry leaders continue to push for racial equality in country music, and Confederate emblems have been right at the heart of debate. The flag was long used as a contentious symbol of the music genre's Southern roots, but artists and the industry's gatekeepers are increasingly reckoning with the racist history it represents. The CMA Fest decision follows California-based Stagecoach Festival implementing similar measures last April. CMA Fest, a four day festival, is considered one of the largest country music gatherings in the world.

Thanks for listening to 5 Things. You can find us on Spotify, Apple Podcasts, your smart speaker device, or wherever you get your audio. Thanks to PJ Elliott for his great work on the show. And I'm back tomorrow with more of 5 Things from USA TODAY.

This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Jan. 6 House hearings in primetime, LIV golf tees off: 5 Things podcast