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‘Incomprehensible’ Bias: Ohio Supreme Court Rejects GOP Attempt to Rig Electoral Map




The Ohio Supreme Court ruled Friday that a GOP-drawn congressional map of the Buckeye state is flagrantly unconstitutional because it unfairly favors Republicans over Democrats.

“When the dealer stacks the deck in advance, the house usually wins,” Justice Michael Donnelly wrote in the court’s 4-3 opinion.

Ohio Republicans have held a comfortable majority in the state delegation for the past decade or so. Yet their margins of victory have been growing smaller, leading to redistricting efforts that divide heavily-Democratic populations.

In 2011, for instance, Cincinnati’s Hamilton County was cut in two, with each half being absorbed by whiter, more rural districts. GOP lawmakers would have cut it into three parts had lawsuits from Democrats and voting rights groups not been successful Friday. More broadly, the map that Republicans approved would have handed them a 12-3 majority, while they currently hold 12 seats to Democrats’ 4. (Ohio will lose one congressional seat due to its decline in population.)

Critics argued the map violated a 2018 constitutional amendment banning partisan gerrymandering, and the court agreed.

“The General Assembly produced a plan that is infused with undue partisan bias and that is incomprehensibly more extremely biased than the 2011 plan that it replaced,” Donnelly wrote. It was so skewed, he noted, that it “defies correction on a simple district-by-district basis.”

Accordingly, the state legislature must now submit a new map within 30 days. If it can’t come up with a solution, the job goes to the seven-member Ohio Redistricting Commission, five of whom are Republicans, including Gov. Mike DeWine, who approved the gerrymandered map.

The partisan redistricting scheme also found an ally in DeWine’s son, who was one of the three judges in the court’s minority.

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Hear Marianne Faithfull’s Forceful ‘Vagabond Ways’ Demo for ‘Incarceration of a Flower Child’




Marianne Faithfull will give her 1999 album, Vagabond Ways, the deluxe treatment with a reissue due out March 4. She’s teasing the release with the demo recording for the album’s “Incarceration of a Flower Child,” a song Roger Waters wrote in 1968 but never recorded with Pink Floyd.

On the demo, Faithfull sings along to a backdrop of acoustic guitars and one buzzy electric as she describes a scene of drinking cheap wine and smoking dope on Indian tapestry cushions. “Don’t get up to answer the door, just stay with me here on the floor,” she belts. “It’s going to get cold in the Seventies.” The studio version that appeared on Vagabond Ways sounds more polished thanks to electronics played by co-producer Mark Howard and synth bass by Waters.

The reissue will feature several other previously unreleased demos, an uncirculated studio recording, and new liner notes. In addition to digital and CD reissues, the record will be available on vinyl for the first time.

The bonus material includes “Blood in My Eyes,” a Bob Dylan cover that previously featured on the Japanese edition of the original album, as well as “Drifting,” a song Faithfull wrote and recorded with co-producer Daniel Lanois but never released. It also includes demos of “Vagabond Ways,” “Electra,” and her cover of Leonard Cohen’s “Tower of Song,” and Waters’ “Incarceration.”

She reflected on her enduring friendship with Waters in a 2014 Rolling Stone feature when she recorded another one of his songs, “Sparrows Will Sing,” for her Give My Love to London album. “He’s one of my dearest friends, and I love him and he’s everything a real gentleman rock star should be,” she said. “He’s not a misogynist. He is not only in it for the money. He is a great man.”

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‘I Was in Prison. Now He Is’: Ronnie Spector Gets Raw on Phil Spector in Unearthed Audio




Ronnie Spector, who died last week at the age of 78, speaks candidly about her abusive ex-husband, Phil Spector, and more in never-before-heard audio on the new episode of Rolling Stone Music Now. Phil Spector, who died in 2021, was in prison for murder when Kory Grow interviewed Ronnie in 2016, and she told Grow she saw it as karmic justice for the years when her ex essentially locked her away in their mansion.

To hear the entire episode, press play above, or listen on Apple Podcasts or Spotify

“I couldn’t go out for seven years,” Spector said. “I didn’t go anywhere… What goes around, comes around. I was in prison. Now he is. So that’s how I look at it.” In the interview clips, Spector also gives a vivid account of the making of the Ronettes’ epochal hit “Be My Baby” and more.

The episode also includes an in-depth discussion between Andy Greene, Angie Martoccio, Rob Sheffield, and host Brian Hiatt about Spector’s life, music, influence (from Jersey Shore rock to punk to riot grrrrl to, um, Eddie Money), and legacy — as well as her soon-to-be-reissued autobiography.

“She talks in the book about how she was possessed when she was young with the desire to be seen, to be heard, to be accepted,” Sheffield says. “She talks about how she was a cheerleader at her high school. And she was like, that wasn’t enough for me, to be the most popular girl in school. I needed to be in the most popular girl in the world. And you can hear that lust for power in ‘Be My Baby.’ This is the voice of an ordinary girl from the streets of Spanish Harlem who is absolutely intent on making the whole world hear her and go, what the hell was that? And that’s exactly what she did.”

Download and subscribe to our weekly podcast, Rolling Stone Music Now, hosted by Brian Hiatt, on Apple Podcasts or Spotify (or wherever you get your podcasts), and check out three years’ worth of episodes in the archive, including in-depth, career-spanning interviews with Bruce Springsteen, Halsey, Neil Young, Snoop Dogg, Brandi Carlile, Phoebe Bridgers, Rick Ross, Alicia Keys, the National, Ice Cube, Robert Plant, Dua Lipa, Questlove, Killer Mike, Julian Casablancas, Sheryl Crow, Johnny Marr, Scott Weiland, Liam Gallagher, Alice Cooper, Fleetwood Mac, Elvis Costello, John Legend, Donald Fagen, Phil Collins, Justin Townes Earle, Stephen Malkmus, Sebastian Bach, Tom Petty, Eddie Van Halen, Kelly Clarkson, Pete Townshend, Bob Seger, the Zombies, Gary Clark Jr., and many others — plus dozens of episodes featuring genre-spanning discussions, debates, and explainers with Rolling Stone’s critics and reporters. Tune in every Friday at 1 p.m. ET to hear Rolling Stone Music Now broadcast on SiriusXM’s Volume, channel 106.

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Watch Jenna Ortega and Maddie Ziegler Grapple With Grief in Billie Eilish-Backed Trailer for The Fallout




On Thursday, HBO Max released the trailer for The Fallout, a film about two teenage girls grappling with the grief of surviving and losing classmates in a school shooting.

The trailer, which opens with a trigger warning, sees Vada (Jenna Ortega) and Mia (Maddie Ziegler) meeting in a school restroom while a shooting erupts in the hallways. As the haunting vocals of Billie Eilish’s “When the Party’s Over” play in the background, the two teens bond over their trauma and heal after surviving the massacre.

“Did you have like the craziest nightmares last night?” Vada asks Mia in one scene. “You have to be able to sleep to have nightmares,” Mia responds.

Ziegler, who got her start on Dance Moms and recently starred in West Side Story, spoke to Today about working with Megan Park, who wrote and directed the film. “It’s so cool to be part of a female-led movie,” she said. “This message needs to be brought up way more and I’m glad it’s being brought to the forefront.”

The Fallout marks the directorial debut for Park and will feature a score composed by Finneas. “Finneas brought a level of empathy to the characters that could only come from a composer who is from the same generation,” Peymon Maskan, the film’s music supervisor, told Variety. “His score is very much inspired by the hope and willingness to overcome such trauma, and it’s quite memorable.”

The film premiered at last year’s South by Southwest Film Festival and earned two awards, while its director, Park, received the Brightcove Illumination Award for her work.

The Fallout — which also stars Niles Fitch, Will Ropp, and Shailene Woodley — premieres on HBO Max on Jan. 27. Watch it here.

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