THE DOUGHNUT IN THE OINTMENT. This Hill article, citing recent poll numbers showing that a majority of seniors are satisfied with their prescription drug coverage, questions whether Democrats will be able to make political hay over the "drug bill debacle" in November. I don't actually think that's a totally dumb question to ask, and only time will tell. But Congressman Pete Stark's quote in the piece -- �They haven�t hit the �doughnut hole� yet. � Let�s do the poll then� -- should definitely be heeded. Beneficiaries are going to start paying 100 percent rather than 25 percent of their drug expenses once those expenses reach $2,250, and most seniors at risk will be hitting that lower limit close to Election Day. How many are actually aware of what's coming?

--Sam Rosenfeld