CHARLOTTE, NC (WBTV) - Day one of early voting in Charlotte was perhaps undermined by the story that broke earlier in the week when City Council member Lawana Mayfield went on a Facebook questioning the events of 9-11, saying she subscribes to a conspiracy theory.
By Thursday morning, Mayfield doubled down on Facebook, saying her words are part of an ongoing dialogue and "what makes America great is differing opinions we do not all have to agree but there should always be space to respectfully share opinion."
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An apology came from State senator Joel Ford, who was on-hand for the first day of primary voting.
"How insensitive, and how untimely it would be for someone - anyone - to make those comments," Ford said. "They're very, very unfortunate, and I apologize for those comments."
The question on the minds of many is, does Mayfield now become a distraction for the Charlotte City Council moving forward?
"It can be really challenging to deal with issues that are taking the council away from focus areas, away from what it's traditionally supposed to do," said Former Mayor Pro Tem Michael Barnes.
Darrell Lucus, who said he was offended by the remarks, started an online petition calling for Mayfield's resignation through change.org. Since Tuesday, it's gotten more than 1,000 signatures.
Lucus, like Mayfield, is a registered Democrat. But he feels the council representative went too far.
"I would be just as outraged by this if a Republican was doing this," Lucas said.
One may wonder if Mayfield's words and actions will get in the way of the council's business.
Mayfield does have a public event on Friday. It is a council retreat that will be held at the Charlotte Fire Department headquarters.