New websites ‘offer hope’ to people who fear their votes are wasted

People who fear their votes are wasted are being given a “massive ray of hope” by new swapping sites, according to one developer.

Under the system, two people agree to vote for each other’s preferred party in their constituency.

The belief is this will increase the chances of their preferred party securing a seat elsewhere in the country and stop their vote being squandered on a minority candidate in their own constituency who has little chance of success.

Tom de Grunwald, who has helped to develop, said the idea of putting “people whose votes are wasted in touch with other people whose votes are wasted” – in an attempt to give individuals more influence – emerged at the 2010 general election.

He said: “We built the website and we are getting some really good interest – hundreds to thousands of users and quite a number of swaps established with more and more people taking part.”

The London-based digital producer went on: “There are so many wins. If thousands of people use it we may see results change as a result – that would be amazing.

“Short of that, the existence of an alternative gives a massive ray of hope to anyone who has considered their vote to be wasted.


“Third, a big positive for me is connecting people with each other and people who might not have ever spoken before and discussed politics.

“In this system, by nature, they will will have different viewpoints and we will hopefully get some more political debate and up the ante with discussion in this country.”

Of the current first-past-the-post system, Mr de Grunwald said: “I am always disappointed with parties that gain from first-past-the-post not actually looking for a fairer system that works for the electorate.

“First-past-the-post parties do seem to defend the system which keeps them in power and this is fantastically interesting year – everything seems possible at the moment and I was not anticipating it would be like this.”

Elsewhere, has more of a focus on vote swaps in England between Labour and Green supporters in an attempt to limit the number of Conservative MPs.

 The site explains:
“It lets you pledge to swap your vote. If you’re a Green in a Labour target seat, you can pledge to vote Labour to keep a Tory out.

“In return a Labour supporter in a seat that Labour is unlikely to win or lose pledges to vote Green, ‘lending’ their vote to a seat where it will make a difference.

“The national vote share does not change, but the number of Tory MPs goes down.

“In most seats being targeted by both Labour and Greens we make no recommendation. We are only advising on vote swaps in England, because other parties running in Scotland and Wales make swapping more complicated.”

“We cannot guarantee that people will honour the swaps they make on this site.

“But we know if they do it gives both Labour and Green supporters a greater chance of kicking the Conservatives out of government in May 2015, and boosting their respective parties at the same time.”

Source –  Northern Echo, 20 Apr 2015


  1. Chris

    First past the post will not work in this election.

    Tory and Labour are neck and neck, which means a severe hung parliament.

    By the rules, Tories have already won and Labour have lost, even if Labour gain more MPs.

    326 MPs minumum threshold to form a UK parliament.

    Neither Tories nor Labour will gain that number of MPs.

    So the Tories are obliged by the rules to remain in power, in a caretaker government.

    The most obvious result will be a TORY / LABOUR / LIB DEM coalition, which will mean no party left over on the opposition benches other than a flying visit down from Scotland by the SNP.

    No party won in 2010.

    Mostly the people did not vote, far more than the winning MP.

    Sometimes as much as about 15,000 votes for the winner, against 50,000 who did not vote.

    You might care to share my website, that can bring about over 250 anti austerity MPs into the UK parliament, that can, in a support and confidence coalition (the strongest kind, not the disaster that the Lib Dems did with the Tories) with Labour, utterly change Labour into an anti austerity majority UK government.

    Labour could be reduced to below 190 MPs.

    Without people voting different instead of this, I’m not voting, mantra, we face a dictatorship, from which we cannot move from.

    Vote SNP and TUSC in Scotland, gives two anti austerity sides to the Scottish parliament. 59 seats.

    Vote Plaid Cymru and a few TUSC in South Wales, gives two anti austerity sides to the Welsh Assembly. 40 seats

    Vote Mebyon Kernow in all 6 Cornwall voting areas and reduce those number of Tory and Lib Dem MPs in the UK government.
    6 anti austerity seats.

    Total so far 105.

    TUSC 113 MP candidates, plus various other socialist mates to TUSC.


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