William Langer was a lawyer before being elected governor in 1933. He was removed from office in 1934 after a federal court found him guilty of fraud and conspiracy; a charge that was later overturned. He was elected as governor again in 1937, and later served in the United States Senate. William Langer was a popular, young, well-educated county attorney. He joined the NPL and was elected Attorney General of North Dakota in 1916. By 1919, Langer was in open conflict with Governor Lynn Frazier and Arthur Townley. Langer's opposition to the NPL leadership helped the Independent Voters Association gain more support in North Dakota.