Top of the ballot: House gets to do it again

The healthcare bill returns to the House, sort of; Obama and the bill might not have gotten such a big bump after all; and Bob Bennett is still waiting to see just how much trouble he faces.

We had so much fun last time, what's one more vote?

Congratulations, House Democrats! You get to vote on healthcare again! OK, it’s not that bad. A late-night ruling from the Senate parliamentarian on two minor provisions of the House-passed reconciliation package will send the package back to the House for another vote. Democrats who are already dealing with primary challenges and losing support from abortion groups would probably rather put the issue behind them. But it’s not as if they will be forced to vote again on the initial healthcare bill, which was signed into law Tuesday and was much more political than the reconciliation package. Any illusions that the parliamentarian’s ruling was a huge victory for the GOP should be offset by Republican Whip Jon Kyl’s (R-Ariz.) concession to our J. Taylor Rushing that it was a “consolation prize.” (Check out Kyl's comments here).

Post-healthcare bump or slump?

A new Quinnipiac poll finds the much-hyped Gallup poll from after the healthcare vote might have been an outlier. Quinnipiac finds President Barack Obama getting an insignificant bump and the healthcare bill still supported by only 40 percent of the population. That is four points higher than it was before the vote, but it’s hardly a flip in favor of the bill either. Nearly half (49 percent) of voters still oppose the bill, and Obama’s approval rating is still one point lower (45 percent) than his disapproval (46). The ratings track with a post-vote CBS News poll that found the bill favored by 42 percent and opposed by 46 percent. We’re still waiting for another poll to validate Gallup’s one-day finding.

Bennett update

We don’t yet know what happened in Utah on Tuesday, but we’ve got a good idea. And none of it sounds good for Sen. Bob Bennett (R-Utah). The Salt Lake Tribune offers some anecdotal evidence of the anti-incumbent mood that existed at the caucuses, and while we don’t have much in the way of hard numbers, it’s clear that Bennett is going to have to fight for his political life. The Tribune even cites someone who campaigned for former GOP Rep. Chris Cannon in 2008 when he barely survived the caucuses and went on to lose the primary. Even having gone through that with Cannon, the person was surprised at the vitriol at his caucus Tuesday.