Two decades of relentless, ruthless political careerism came crashing to a halt in the early hours of Sunday morning, when viral Snapchat footage surfaced of Emma Berusch, CC’19, drunkenly stumbling into a CAVA van. The credibility of the prospective class representative was called into question, as only a week before the incident Berusch had sworn in a Pepe-themed Instagram post that public concerns about her fitness for office dating back to NSOP were totally unverified alt-right conspiracy theories.
“My opponent says that I need to #partyhard and #drinkbeer to #disguisemyconcealedandpotentiallyseriousmedicalcondition,” the politically connected sophomore said, directing supporters to contribute to her burgeoning $200 campaign fund. “But check out his #NaziFrog and his frat’s fridge full of #PabstBlueRibbon. Talk about #basketofdeplorables.”
The 10-second snapchat, taken surreptitiously by a FOX News intern, shows the 5’3” sophomore downing multiple Jagermeisters and spasmodically clawing at her campaign staff of sisters in the Delta Gamma sorority as they attempted to load her into the vehicle before campus media arrived. Against normal protocol, Berusch’s protective escort in the CAVA van drove off at high speed to the sorority’s brownstone, depositing the ailing politico near a wastebasket to recuperate with her little.
Her campaign manager and roommate, Jasmine Morata CC’19, came under fire due to the campaign’s shifting and contradictory efforts to explain away Berusch’s penchant for raging the night away. At first, the campaign claimed that she was merely “overheated,” consequent of a claustrophobic dancing environment at a Delta Sig mixer, while heated debate raged between her supporters and critics about the role, if any, the thudding bars of Lil Jon may have played in her dizzy spell.
For several weeks Berusch had chalked up bouts of public intoxication as products of her battle with “allergies,” but following the dissection of the Snapchat by legions of skeptical Bwog and Spec correspondents, she was forced to come clean and acknowledge that she had been diagnosed with being “totally fucking schwasted!” by a friend majoring in pre-med.
The revelations came at an awkward time in the campaign, as momentum had already begun to shift in favor of Berusch’s principal opponent in the CCSC race, fellow sophomore and Beta mainstay Binyamin Turquoisespan.
Turquoisespan, whose burnished tangerine skin, inherited real estate wealth and penchant for live-tweeting thoughtless attacks on minorities and venerated institutions (#lithumisawaste, #lithumisamess) had garnered him sustained criticism, recently surged into the lead according to most major tracking polls of freshman class elections in the liberal arts colleges of major American research universities.
“Crooked Emma is low energy. Where did the money from those DG bake sales go?” Turquoisespan asked, shuffling an envelope full of unmarked bills into the hands of a Columbia Political Union elections administrator. He later tweeted: “Crooked Emma’s campaign is doomed. Voters remember #Deltaghazi. Very sad. #MCGA!”
Berusch, seen as the candidate of stability and continuity, had campaigned on a platform to keep JJ’s Place open to Barnard students, retain Rae Sremmurd as Bacchanal headliners, and appoint ideologically pure freshmen to unelected council positions.
Having recently celebrated her twentieth birthday at the start of sophomore year due to a gap year, she was criticized as aging and out of touch, an elitist who had profited from the political connections of her former class president boyfriend. The allegations that she couldn’t handle her priceless, boutique liquor fed into perceptions that she also couldn’t relate to the average student.
“So maybe I wear Gucci to CC and have never had my ID confiscated at 1020. Maybe my main minority outreach consists of awkward jokes with Lyft drivers,” Berusch said, eyeing the Intercultural Resource Center with grim determination during a recent get-out-the-vote drive. “You may not vote for me. But, so help me God, you will obey me.”
The electorate of several dozen first-years who had failed to avoid opening Facebook messages from the candidates, and thus fatally marked them as “Read,” reported relatively low enthusiasm for the election. At press time, Turquoisespan was facing criticism for telling a Mexican public safety officer that his race compromised his legal impartiality in busting Turquoisespan’s SAT tutoring service for racketeering.
Democracy’s transformative power was viewed cynically by first-years who said they faced an untenable choice between a careerist who could not secure her DMs and an authoritarian who relished the prospect of Toni Morrison book burnings out on College Walk. But ultimately a majority of students at the progressive Ivy League school, like sophomore Natalie Miller, are expected to walk in the footsteps of their predecessors in following their conscience to preserve a storied political tradition.
“Yeah, I’ll probably post an angry Facebook status and bitch about this to my friends,” said Miller. “But it’s not like I’m planning to vote.”