Lang was quoted extensively in the lead article on the front page of the Memphis Commercial Appeal regarding partisan primaries in Shelby County. Here are some excerpts:
When it comes to Shelby County’s partisan primaries, Sidney Chism (the Democrat) and Lang Wiseman (the Republican) agree — they’d just as soon to get rid of them.
“When I was Democratic Party chairman, I said you don’t need to have any partisan primaries. Republicans fought against me and Democrats fought against me, they wore me out,” said Chism, from a Democrat-dominated swath of Whitehaven in the southwest part of the county.
Wiseman, from Republican-dominated northeast Shelby County, says: “If I were king of the world and had my druthers, I would have nonpartisan (county) elections.”
Chism and Wiseman are not alone. Those who argue against the primaries point to the abysmal turnouts that in many cases allow commissioners to be elected by less than 1 percent of the county’s registered voters.
“You see how few people actually decide who is going to be a commissioner, and in a lot of ways I think it favors the good ol’ boy system and people who have just been there the longest,” Wiseman said.