The defeat of the the Tea Party backed government shutdown is just the latest setback to be sustained by the Tea Party backed Congress and along with it the GOP. They have effectively sabotaged and crippled the Republican Party's ability to compete on a National scale. Far from rescuing it, they wrecked havoc on the party while hurting the American people and the economy.
I think its making them worried about their jobs because those that caved just might get replaced. And the Democratics are worried too that's why they are calling them terrorist . They think they are scaring them off but the more name calling the stronger they get.
I have given up trying to understand the left's unreasoning hatred of another party's constituents. The only excuse I can think of is, the Democrats need an enemy so that they can pull their many disparate elements together. Nothing unifies like a demonized common enemy.
The Tea Party has begun the process of returning the Republican Party to it's roots, as the party of smaller and less intrusive government. If the establishment GOP had not become indistinguishable from the Democrats, there would not have been a need for an internal transformational revolution. The purpose of having two political parties is to have representation of opposing ideologies, which is central to effective representative democracy. Of course, the party in power will always claim that the opposition party is obstructing their great plans for giving everyone forty acres and a mule and a chicken in every pot and universal health and happiness. The job of the opposition party is to put the brakes on runaway utopian legislation and make the public aware of just how stupid some of the proposed programs really are. When the Opposition, in this case the GOP, adopts a policy of 'going along to get along', it has failed it's purpose and needs to be re-energized and re-focused. A process, which of course horrifies the Democrats, who have been the beneficiaries of the GOP establishments willingness to 'compromise' when they should be putting on the brakes.