Lawmaker's 'bonehead' spouse apologizes for pulling down campaign sign
Posted September 1, 2016
Wilson, N.C. — A state lawmaker and her husband apologized Thursday for some campaign sign shenanigans at a Wilson brewpub.
Dr. Lew Martin, the husband of Rep. Susan Martin, R-Wilson, was caught on a security camera taking a campaign sticker for Martin's opponent, Democrat Charlie Pat Farris, off the front door of Brewmasters, at 2117 Forest Hills Road West, and replacing it with a Martin sticker.
Owner Morkos Youssef said the video showed the Martins had been at his brewpub for dinner on Tuesday night before the sign switcheroo.
"To our surprise, much to my surprise even, there was Lew just taking the other one off, walking back to his truck, I guess to get a Susan Martin sticker, and sticking the other one right back up there," Youssef said.
Even though he supports Farris, Youssef said he is friendly with both candidates and let them both put stickers on his door. After someone removed Martin's sticker months ago, he said he told the Martins they could replace it.
"For them to just take his down and put hers up, he could have just walked right up and stuck it up right there beside it, and nothing would have ever been said about it," Youssef said. "It was silly on his part."
"I'm a bonehead," Lew Martin acknowledged.
The orthopedic surgeon said he had gotten a frustrating phone call from work and lashed out.
"I sort of turned around, and there's the sticker, and it's been a sore thumb for me for some time since (the Martin campaign sticker) was removed," Lew Martin said. "Everyone who knows me knows I'm just kind of a passionate guy, so I took the sticker off, put the other sticker on. I certainly apologize for that, Charlie Pat."
He also apologized to Youssef.
Susan Martin said she didn't know what her husband had done, but she apologized as well.
"I am very embarrassed," she said.
Vandalizing or removing campaign signs is a misdemeanor under state law. Farris said he doesn't think he will press charges, but he does plan to file a complaint with the State Board of Elections. He said he hopes the race can move on in a positive direction.
"The only thing I would say is I'm sorry to my kids and all the kids out there. It's not a very good example. My father would be very embarrassed," Lew Martin said. "I'm really, really embarrassed."