If you are parsing HTML with splits, you are most likely doing it wrong, except if you are writing a one-shot script aimed at a fixed and secure content file. If it is supposed to work on any HTML input, how will you handle something like
<a title='growth > 8%' href='#something'>?
Anyway, the following works for me:
>>> import re
>>> re.split('(<[^>]*>)', '<body><table><tr><td>')[1::2]
['<body>', '<table>', '<tr>', '<td>']