The seat is currently based around Dandenong and its surrounding suburbs, although in previous years the seat has had a more rural character. Traditionally it has been a key marginal seat, but since the 1970s demographic changes have made it a safe Labor Party seat. However, during the Kennett government the seat became very marginal again, and at the 1999 election the Liberals put a substantial effort into an ultimately unsuccessful attempt at winning the seat. The neglect of their own marginal seats was seen as one of the reasons why the Coalition narrowly lost government at that election. , 
The current member is John Pandazopoulos, who has a 13.9% margin. While still a safe seat, the ALP margin has been steadily declining since reaching its high point at the 2002 election. Minor parties such as Greens, DLP and Family First captured 20% of the vote at the 2010 election.