Little House on the Prairie: Season 3, Episode 20

The Election (21 Mar. 1977)

TV Episode  |  TV-PG  |   |  Drama, Family, Romance
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Ratings: 7.9/10 from 55 users  
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As a prank to make him look foolish, the older boys of Walnut Grove school nominate the object of their practical jokes, gentle Elmer Dobkins, to run for class president against popular ... See full summary »



(developed for television by), (based upon the series of books "Little House" by), 1 more credit »
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Title: The Election (21 Mar 1977)

The Election (21 Mar 1977) on IMDb 7.9/10

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Episode cast overview, first billed only:
Carrie Ingalls (as Lindsay Sidney Greenbush)
Carrie Ingalls (as Lindsay Sidney Greenbush)
Harriet Oleson (as Katherine MacGregor)
Sam Dobkins
Eric Olson ...
Elmer Dobkins
Mitzi Hoag ...
Ellen Dobkins
John Herbsleb ...
Joel Turner
Kenny Bagby


As a prank to make him look foolish, the older boys of Walnut Grove school nominate the object of their practical jokes, gentle Elmer Dobkins, to run for class president against popular Mary Ingalls and wealthy Nellie Oleson. While Mary and Nellie wage their campaigns with promises of popcorn and gum balls, Mr. Dobkins witnesses his son being teased by the older boys and, when he finds out why Elmer was nominated, angrily orders him to pull out of the election. But, when election day comes and the race seems too close to call, a cruel act and children tired of being bullied decide the outcome. Written by shepherd1138

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis




Release Date:

21 March 1977 (USA)  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?


Michael Landon son plays Jim in this episode. See more »


Harriet Oleson: Willie, we know that you're going to vote for your sister.
Willie Oleson: Not if I don't get any sourballs!
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User Reviews

Not my favorite
8 June 2013 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

Elmer is another one of those one-episode-only characters. Elmer is a little simple. He has a love for animals and simply loves people unconditionally. But I thought his character was very weak and silly. I really don't think that Elmer is the way he is because he's dumb. I don't think he parents have taught him how to be strong and to stand up for himself. I also don't think he did enough to stand on his own two feet. He needs to get a backbone...

With that said, I liked how the kids all helped Elmer out and loved him in the end. Elmer may be simple, but he's a sweet kid who deserved the love and respect of his classmates!

This was never one of my favorite episodes, but it deserves recognition for the positive message of loving those who deserve to be loved. I must say, though, that the best part of the episode is Willie's vote!

1 of 1 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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