We’ve all been glued to our TVs waiting for election results to trickle in, and two men have risen to the challenge of helping soothe the nerves of a rattled nation. Over the past 48 hours, CNN’s John King and MSNBC’s Steve Kornacki have become election coverage superstars, as they and their map board touch screens guide us through a chaotic time.

While the wait in excruciating, it should be noted that the election process is playing out exactly as experts predicted it would. It’s simply taking time to accurately count votes, and while the waiting is the hardest part, it is not an indication that the democratic process has been subverted or corrupted. Because of a confluence of factors —pandemic, early voting, mail in ballots etc — it’s taking longer than usual to tabulate results which means that the two men who run the map boards for CNN and MSNBC have been our constant companions for the past two days. It isn’t just that King and Kornacki have been on TV a lot, but they’ve risen to viral status because of their distinct styles, that, while wildly different, are trustworthy, soothing and exactly what we need at the moment.

On election night, CNN’s King was a stark contrast to Wolf Blitzer’s bombastic persona, taking the entire temperature of the network’s broadcast down from defcon 1 to a much more reasonable level. As we waited for the initial polls to close, King kept repeating that the election was playing out in a fair way, that there were no credible concerns with how votes were counted, and this is what we do as a democracy. It was clear that his goal wasn’t just to deliver information, but to protect the sanctity of the democratic process. During a tense time, his constant reassurances were what people needed to hear.

Over the past two days, King has been fair and precise in reporting where votes are coming from, what we don’t yet know, and what each candidate needs to do to win. He’s also been insistent in saying that all votes should be counted, regardless of which side they come down on. King has been like an elder statesmen, not flashy at all, just consistent, reasonable, and unflappable. At a time when people are so on edge,  he’s been the stability we need.

Now, for those who found King a little too mellow, MSNBC’s Steve Kornacki, a sudden viral star, has been the perfect antidote. On TV, Kornacki has been a ball of uncontainable energy and enthusiasm, leaning over MSNBC’s map board with all the eagerness of a puppy trying to climb into a loved one’s lap. While his style is the exact opposite of King’s, he’s no less trustworthy and has kept his focus on the what the numbers are telling us. His enthusiasm, his sometimes halting delivery and his SuperCuts hairstyle have made him so popular that MSNBC actually started a Kornacki Cam for the superfans.

Kornacki’s great gift isn’t just how smart he clearly is, it’s that he doesn’t look like he belongs on TV at all, which somehow makes it easier to trust him. King looks like he came from central casting (the square jaw, the blinding smile, the linebacker physique) while Kornacki looks as if they pulled a very excitable accountant off the street. His extreme nerdiness is so endearing, it has made people across the internet thirst madly.

Still, he has a plain way of speaking about the results that makes the information accessible, without being condescending. Most of all, his enthusiasm for the information, the way he’s explaining how it all fits together, has been hugely important in helping connect the dots during a chaotic time.

Yesterday, I tried to get the internet to pick one MVP between Kornacki and King, and people were hotly divided. Mostly though, it was clear that there was no need to chose. We need both of them right now. I’ve watched so much election coverage, I hear King’s deep baritone in my sleep, find myself saying ‘tomorrow’ they oddly specific way Kornacki always says it. This morning, it was a big topic of conversation that Kornacki changed his tie, though it’s not clear if he’s eaten or slept since the polls closed. I assume he’s just running on an unlimited supply of Diet Coke. I have no idea how tired John King is, all I know is that his dashing white hair hasn’t budged an inch in DAYS and his tan is unbeatable. Every time I turn on the TV, either late night or in the morning, one of them is invariably there, waving arm circles in front of a bright red and blue board, determined to guide this thing home.

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