Only three out of more than 230 Republican legislators in the US Congress voted in favor of the "stimulus package." Their plain intent was to vote "no" so that should the economy continue its downward spiral they would be in a position to claim "I told you so." And, if it needs to be said, it is likely the downward spiral will continue, possibly to the bottom, because of self-reinforcing effects of the disastrous policies adopted by our lawmakers over the last several years.
Here's an example of such a spiral. We've long known that the production of beef as a foodstuff for humans in a monstrously wasteful use of the planet's resources because of the fuels and materials to feed the cattle, butcher them, transport and market the meat. Indeed, there is no facet of that industry that isn't bloated with excess input, compared to the caloric result in the form of human food. However, Americans' fixation on meat is almost hard-wired, a product of centuries of dominance of the agriculture and cattle industries in our nation.
At the same time, we've found that the worldwide demand for petroleum products to run our transport and industry has driven many to turn to "biofuels" as a source of energy, with, however, the consequence that the increased demand for corn and grain to make biofuels has driven up the price of the very products that for years have been used as fodder for both beef cattle and dairy herds. Indeed, of late, California dairy farmers have been killing their dairy cows because (1) the worldwide recession has driven down the price they get for milk, while (2) the cost to feed the dairy cows has increased beyond the price the milk demands on the open market. Result: Farmers are simply killing their cattle because they can't afford to keep feeding them for either milk production or beef. And of course with the diminished amounts of money in the hands of consumers due to the economic downturn, the prospect of an increased demand for such foodstuffs anytime soon is unlikely at best, so that the cattle-reduction, for both beef and milk, will likely continue for some time, possibly until that industry too becomes a recession liability.
Bottom line: The Republicans may have made the right political choice in opposing the stimulus. They've so wrecked the world economy--they've created so many ruinous loops like the cattle-debacle--that the smart money is indeed riding on failure of the stimulus, and they can regain credibility, if not governing status, by having opposed it.