CHAPEL HILL, NC- Over 200 students are dead Tuesday after political violence ravaged the campus of the University of North Carolina in the midst of the contentious Student Body President elections. Supporters of Jane Tullis and Ashton Martin took to the quad around midday and began throwing rocks, bottles and other objects into the opposing crowd, eventually devolving into a brawl. It is still unclear which group initiated the violence that left 234 dead and 1,254 wounded.
“We do not condone this shameful display,” said a spokesperson for the Jane Tullis campaign, “however, we believe it was provocation from supporters of Martin that caused the violence to get out of hand.” The Tullis campaign wields the support of the powerful Greek community, who have pledged not to recognize the election if she is not sworn in as president. The Martin campaign responded saying, “We are not surprised by the violent actions of Tullis supporters, the rhetoric of their campaign is what drove this chaos in the street.”
The rioting, which was eventually broken up by police, was the largest event of political violence since last year’s election cycle when Savannah Putnam supporters killed 562 students who just happened to be in the Pit.
Tensions in this election year have been high since the beginning of the campaign last month when each of the candidates openly suggested that people should care enough to actually vote.