"The Republicans are hedging their bets. They want to be able to use the stimulus as a bludgeon (just think of the pork stories!) and want to be on record against it for 2010. But just in case the pointy headed economists are right, they do need to take care of their rich benefactors. If America's owners really didn't want this to pass they would have twisted some corporate Democrats' arms. (Conversely, if they really wanted it to be bipartisan, they would have twisted some Republicans' arms.)
Of course, they do have the next financial system bailout to think about. Perhaps they are just keeping their powder dry for a real centrist, bipartisan lovefest."
The politics of Republican opposition to the stimulus is all about Republican leadership of the authoritarians, the dittoheads, the evangelical christians, the angry f.u. white guys. John McCain, despite being the worst Presidential candidate since Benjamin Harrison, got 46% of the vote, and a lot of discouraged Republican voters stayed home, because they did not want to be voting for the loser in the election.
Most people in this country do not understand the first thing about politics. They listen to CNN, and don't realize for one second that it is a right-wing propaganda operation. The Democrats do not know how to run against the Republicans, do not know how to tell the truth, how to appeal to populist emotions -- the Democrats talk "issues" and expect the opposition party to accept facts and to be responsible in a crisis. The Republicans, of course, ignore facts and act on their most angry, resentful declarations without heed for there even being consequences, let alone any recognition of what those consequences are.