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Photo: MSNBC

MSNBC's Steve Kornacki, author of "The Red and the Blue: The 1990s and the Birth of Political Tribalism," told Axios about his prep plans ahead of Election Day.

How Steve preps: "I'm in my office right now. I am staring at a notecard that's got the — what am I looking at here? — I've got Illinois: I've got the different potentially competitive districts in Illinois. I've got the component counties. I've got the share of each county that's part of the district.  I've got the share of the district the county accounts for. I've got the 2016 Trump and Clinton numbers, and I've got a very rough turnout estimate for each."

  • "So my goal is to internalize as much of this as I can ... The more time I spend writing this, looking at it, staring at it, repeating it, the more I'll internalize."

On the physicality of his reports: "People say I come across a little energetic and I can tell you, it's not an act. It's not shtick. I'm not trying to channel Crazy Eddie from those old commercials or something."

  • "Honestly, It's my natural reaction to what I'm seeing — to all of the different, pieces of information coming in, and the challenge of trying to process them on the fly and make sense of them."

What we'll learn tonight: "I think we're going to find out how much of the polarization or tribalism that was reflected in the 2016 results, how much of it's permanent, at least for the Trump era."

Steve's Game Day ritual, between his "Morning Joe" appearance and the 6 p.m. beginning of his reports from 30 Rock: "I used to go just find a sandwich shop, bring a newspaper, and I would go carve out a couple hours and just zone out, read that."

  • "I think this year I'm going to have to stay closer to the office. But my goal for the afternoon hours is more to step back from trying to do TV stuff and say: 'OK, I've learned what I need to learn for this. Let me just take a few breaths, focus myself.' And then when numbers start coming in, here we go."

Go deeper with other cable news stars' plans for Election Day:

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Go deeper

Schumer calls for IG probe into alleged plan by Trump, DOJ lawyer to oust acting AG

Jeffrey Clark speaks next to Deputy US Attorney General Jeffrey Rosen at a news conference in October. Photo: Yuri Gripas/AFP via Getty Images.

Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) on Saturday called for the Justice Department inspector general to investigate an alleged plan by former President Trump and a DOJ lawyer to remove the acting attorney general and replace him with someone more willing to investigate unfounded claims of election fraud.

Driving the news: The New York Times first reported Friday that the lawyer, Jeffrey Clark, allegedly devised "ways to cast doubt on the election results and to bolster Mr. Trump’s continuing legal battles and the pressure on Georgia politicians. Because Mr. [Jeffrey] Rosen had refused the president’s entreaties to carry out those plans, Mr. Trump was about to decide whether to fire Mr. Rosen and replace him with Mr. Clark."

3 hours ago - World

Brazil begins distributing AstraZeneca coronavirus vaccine

Containers carrying doses of the Oxford/AstraZeneca vaccine arrive in Brazil. Photo: Maurio Pimentel/AFP via Getty Images

Brazil on Saturday began distributing the 2 million doses of the AstraZeneca coronavirus vaccine that arrived from India Friday, Reuters reports.

Why it matters: Brazil has the third highest COVID-19 case-count in the world, according to Johns Hopkins University data. The 2 million doses "only scratch the surface of the shortfall," Brazilian public health experts told the AP.

Sullivan speaks with Israel's national security adviser for the first time

Israeli national security adviser Meir Ben Shabbat U.S. Photo: Mazen Mahdi/Getty Images. U.S. national security adviser Jake Sullivan. Photo: Chandan Khanna/Getty Images

U.S. national security adviser Jake Sullivan spoke on the phone Saturday with his Israeli counterpart Meir Ben Shabbat, Israeli officials tell Axios.

Why it matters: This is the first contact between the Biden White House and Israeli prime minister's office. During the transition, the Biden team refrained from speaking to foreign governments.

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