Funny guys win big in UT student government election

Xavier Rotnofsky and Rohit Mandalapu write for The Texas Travesty. It's UT's satirical publication -- kind of like "The Onion."

Every year The Travesty runs a couple of candidates in the student government election.

This time they won!

"I thought this was a good time because a lot of people are sort of fed up with student government and nothing really gets done and things could be a lot better," said VP-elect Mandalapu.

Even though they fought for putting a Chili's and a TGI Friday's on campus, a penthouse in the UT tower and dressing student government officials only in cellophane to promote transparency, their campaign started off slowly.

"I guess in the first 2 weeks of the general election, it ended up with us getting 26% of the vote," President-elect Rotnofsky said.

So they upped their game a bit -- and started campaigning on dating apps Tinder and Grindr. Rotnofsky says in the run-off week they gained about 20 points.

"It was in that week that Rohit and I kind of realized...'uh oh.' Something has gotten bigger than we ever thought it would," he said.

A little taken aback, Rotnofsky says they stepped on the campaign brakes and decided to make an attack ad...on themselves.

"'Are they even qualified?' 'Are they even single?' 'Two dweebs,'" some of the quotes in the attack ad read.

And it paid off. They won by a landslide.

It's not the first time something like this has happened.

Austin-native Sam Hurt is a cartoonist. His comic strip Eyebeam is still being published in the Austin Chronicle. But it started when he was a UT student. Back in the early '80s he decided his Eyebeam character "Hank the Hallucination" should run for president.

"I thought if I was going to run one of the characters in the strip, it should be Hank the Hallucination because he doesn't exist even with the strip," Hurt joked.

You guessed it...Hank won too.

"Yeah he just got more votes and that was...kind of impressive because he was not on the ballot so they had to write him in. He got more votes than any 2 human candidates put together," he said.

The powers-that-be ended up deciding Hank couldn't really be president since...you know...he's made of ink. But Hurt is excited for the Rotnofsky-Mandalapu administration.

"Well more power to them...have fun," Hurt said.

"We need to remind everybody, we're just students. It's a student organization. It's not...the Federal Government! So if anything Rohit and I at least hope to show that we're approachable and student government is approachable, it should be approachable," Rotnofsky said.

In all seriousness, Rotnofsky and Mandalupu are assuring everyone...it's going to be ok.

They have real issues they're passionate about -- like removing the controversial Jefferson Davis statue and fighting against "campus carry."

They'll be inaugurated for the 2015-2016 school year next month.

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