Steve Schmidt: Expect Romney to take the lead – but maybe not for long

Updated

Republican strategist Steve Schmidt predicted Thursday night that the bounce from Mitt Romney’s convention speech will in the coming days give him a legitimate—if short-lived—lead in the polls.

Schmidt’s comments came after msnbc’s Chuck Todd praised the effectiveness of the personal moments in Romney’s speech. “I think the biggest thing he needed to accomplish tonight was to connect personally, and that shouldnt be underestimated,” said Todd, host of The Daily Rundown. “When he was talking about his Mom and his Dad and his family, that’s as good as I’ve ever seen Mitt Romney connect on a personal level. And I think that that in itself, if that’s all they get out of this speech, they will say ‘hey, this convention was a success.’”

Schmidt, who ran Sen. John McCain’s 2008 presidential campaign, agreed and went further.

“I think the cartoon of the ‘Mitt-bot’ as he’s been lampooned and caricatured really faded away over the course of this,” Schmidt said. “He became a real three-dimensional human being, and I think he came across like a good guy, a decent person, and I think it’s going to be hard to erase that from people’s memories.”

Schmidt continued with a polling prediction:

I think he got what he needed out of this convention. I’ll be very surprised if Mitt Romney doesn’t open up a lead outside the margin of error over the next couple of days. It’ll be short-lived coming into the Democratic convention but I think they’re going to get that lead for the first time in this race.

The Democratic convention starts Tuesday in Charlotte.

Mitt Romney

Steve Schmidt: Expect Romney to take the lead -- but maybe not for long

Updated