A VERY LONG 15 MINUTES…. I’m watching developments on the House floor, where voting was supposed to have ended on the bailout package quite a while ago. As of this minute, House leaders are keeping the vote open, waiting to see how many, if any, votes can be moved before banging the gavel.

As I type, there are 207 votes for the package, and 226 against it. The surprise is the extent of the Republican opposition. More on that soon.

Also, as the floor vote continued, the markets tanked, with the Dow down as many as 700 points a short while ago. Again, as I type, the Dow is down 561.

More soon.

Update: OK, the bill failed, 228 to 205. The House has decided, oddly enough, to try a do-over. Yes, the House is taking up the same bill, again, right now fairly soon, seeing if the same lawmakers vote differently this time. The Dow’s down about 500.

Our ideas can save democracy... But we need your help! Donate Now!

Follow Steve on Twitter @stevebenen. Steve Benen is a producer at MSNBC's The Rachel Maddow Show. He was the principal contributor to the Washington Monthly's Political Animal blog from August 2008 until January 2012.