Voter power in Houghton & Sunderland South


Constituency marginality

Ultra safe

In Houghton & Sunderland South, one person does not really have one vote, they have the equivalent of 0.076 votes.

The power of voters in this constituency is based on the probability of the seat changing hands and its size.

While you might think that every vote counts equally, where you live in the UK has a huge effect on your power to influence the election.

How does Houghton & Sunderland South compare?

The average UK voter has 4x more voting power than voters in Houghton & Sunderland South.

Average UK voter power


The average UK voter only has the power of 0.305 votes. This is because most of us live in safe seats, where the outcome is pretty much certain regardless of how we vote.

Houghton & Sunderland South ranks #498 out of 650 constituencies in the Voter Power Index.

UK constituency marginality

We can be almost certain that 60% of seats will NOT change hands in the general election (very safe or ultra safe seats).

Further information


The more times a seat changes hands, the more marginal it is deemed to be.

  • 2010 Lab

Constituency size


This constituency is smaller than average, which means a voter here is more likely to affect the national result.

Number of voters: 68,216

Average constituency: 69,718

2010 election data

50% of votes discarded

49.70% of those who voted in Houghton & Sunderland South in 2010 did not vote for the winning candidate. These votes count for nothing in the First Past the Post system.

2010 General Election result

2010 General Election result in Houghton & Sunderland South

Winner takes all

2010 General Election result in Houghton & Sunderland South

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The Voter Power Index is based on research by NEF (the New Economics Foundation)

If the UK had a proportional voting system:

  • We would no longer have safe seats
  • The power of votes would be much more equal
  • All areas of the UK would have equal power to decide the outcome of the election
  • Politicians would not be able to win an election by tailoring all their policies to a narrow section of the population
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