Speaking before a festive crowd on Cohen's behalf at a stand set up in front of the Federal Building downtown were Memphis mayor Willie Herenton and Shelby County mayor A C Wharton. "It is very simple: Steve Cohen is the best qualified candidate for this job," Herenton said of Cohen, whom he characterized as having "a wealth of experience and a knowledge of the governmental process." In his turn, Wharton said, 'This is a joyous day in which we're looking at those things which unite us and not those things that divide us."
Also speaking were two figures whose personal histories link them to the history of the Civil Rights movement - just-retired General Sessions Judge Russell Sugarmon and longtime NAACP head Maxine Smith. (For more, go to "Political Beat".)
Incumbent Democratic county mayor A C Wharton easily won reelection, as did Sheriff Mark Luttrell and District Attorney General Bill Gibbons, both Republicans. Several countywide positions were won narrowly by Republican incumbents on the basis of the final precincts counted, dashing the hopes of several Democrats who led for much of the night.
Judicial elections saw most incumbents and other pre-election favorites triumphant though incumbent judges Michelle Alexander-Best and Donn Southern were defeated by Karen Massey and Karen Webster, respectively. (For more, go to "Political Beat".