Tally (voting)

A tally (also see tally sticks) is an unofficial private observation of an election count carried out under Proportional Representation using the Single Transferable Vote. Tallymen, appointed by political candidates and parties, observe the opening of ballot boxes and watch as the individual ballot papers are counted. Individual tallymen may be placed to observe the opening of each box and watch as separate bundles of ballot papers are sorted, stacked and counted. They record their estimation of counts by marking votes for each candidate on their ‘tally sheet’ as a tick (/) which are then assembled together to produce a full prediction of what the likely outcome of the result will be. Many political parties, having been rival during elections, co-operate in producing a tally.