Anti-Trump efforts are only making Trump stronger as GOP convention gets closer

Donald Trump
Getty Images
Donald Trump

It's the eve of the wedding. Family and close friends are gathering for the big rehearsal dinner. Things are going well, but then your rich, quirky aunt stands up and declares she is opposed to the wedding, won't be coming to the ceremony and you can forget about getting a gift. Of course, the wedding goes on as planned and nobody really misses that aunt as it's clear to everyone she embarrassingly overplayed her hand.

That's what's going on right now as the Republicans prepare for the big GOP convention in Cleveland beginning July 18th. Several big names in the party are choosing this time to launch one last push to block Donald Trump from officially getting the nomination. Some of those publicly objecting to the "marriage" are trying to convince the Trump delegates to choose another candidate and many of the richest anti-Trumpers are refusing to donate to the party at all. I understand the objections to Trump, I really do. But it's also painfully obvious that these machinations against his inevitable nomination are hopeless, and it's just slightly less obvious that when rich Republican elites come out so strongly and publicly against Trump it helps his campaign messaging and solidifies his core support.

Think about it, when someone like former Treasury Secretary Hank Paulson endorses Hillary Clinton or an Upper West Side billionaire Republican like Paul Singer warns of an economic apocalypse if Trump wins, that just helps Trump's assertion that he's fighting Wall Street and the rest of the establishment with a campaign for real change.

It's just this kind of Quixotic crusading against Trump that's allowed him to become the first Republican presidential candidate since Teddy Roosevelt to make a believable stand against the moneyed interests in this country. And it's also allowing Trump to do something just as important: distance himself from the losing brand that is the Republican Party while still running as that party's nominee. In other words, the usually very smart and wealthy political powers that be aren't only failing, they seem to be oblivious to the fact that everything they're doing to stop Trump is backfiring.

"Trump's anti-establishment message clearly shows that people like them have failed to deliver the Republican Party any real electoral advantages in decades."

This isn't the first time we've seen this kind of scenario in the GOP. After President Richard Nixon's historic trip to China in 1972, conservative elites led by National Review publisher William F. Buckley angrily removed their support from Nixon and actively supported an insurgent candidate against their own Republican incumbent in the primaries.

To say that little ploy didn't work would be an understatement; Nixon won 500+ electoral votes and more than 60 percent of the popular vote that November. No one's going to get 500 electoral votes this year, but Trump has already won an historic numbers of votes in the primaries, and has a great chance to win the White House. I suspect even the most outraged Trump enemy within the Republican fold knows this.

So the question has to be asked: why try to play the role of party pooper? If people like Paulson, Singer, and ring leader William Kristol, really don't like Trump, why not just quietly refuse to support and vote for him? Why make such a public scene of it all like that crazy aunt at the rehearsal dinner?

The answer can be found by looking at a map. Where exactly do people like Singer, Kristol, and the late Buckley live and work? Hint: it's not in a red state like Texas. No, they mostly live in intensely liberal strongholds like New York City and Washington, D.C. That's more good news for Trump, as Republican votes basically don't count in those areas anyway.

But, as anyone who lives in those areas can tell you, Trump supporters are getting more than just the silent treatment right now. The steady comparisons of Trump to Hitler are ubiquitous in deep blue America. These anti-Trump GOP elites publicly opposing him may be trying to save face just like the rich aunt embarrassed by the groom is trying to save face among her snooty friends at her country club.

But more importantly, they are miffed that Trump's anti-establishment message clearly shows that people like them have failed to deliver the Republican Party any real electoral advantages in decades. In their minds, the Republican voters have run off with the wrong man even though that nice Scott Walker/Marco Rubio/Jeb Bush was so perfect for them. And, they're pushing violently against the reality that no one really cares what they think anyway.

Trump is indeed blowing up the Republican Party. Despite Clinton's best efforts, the Democratic Party has been also been blown up, in this case by Bernie Sanders and his socialist progressives. The only people who don't seem to be aware of it are the extremely rich core donors from both sides. In the Democrats' case, those powerful interests were still able to shove their favorite into the nomination while the Republican powers failed. Either way, they've both already lost. The next 13 days until the GOP convention will only make that fact more obvious to everyone.

Commentary by Jake Novak, supervising producer of "Power Lunch." Follow him on Twitter @jakejakeny.

For more insight from CNBC contributors, follow @CNBCopinion on Twitter.