I can see why Ben Nelson, a Democrat from a red state, is eager to don the "moderate" mantle and hack into the stimulus bill, but Susan Collins is from one of the bluest states in the country: she doesn't lose a thing by supporting the bill as it is, and in fact, would gain some cred with her blue state voters. So why does she do it? A "moderate" Democrat gains and maintains his or her precious status as a "moderate" by sabotaging Democratic legislation. A "moderate" Republican is a Republican in a blue state who ... demonstrates their "moderation" by sabotaging Democratic legislation. That about sums up the scorekeeping abilities of the press corps.
The comments in this bit, unaptly titled "Political Intelligence," go a long ways towards explaining why this country, which should be nearing its apex, is, in fact, in decline, both in an absolute and relative sense.