Neocons made their first shot across the bow in 1997, promising what they delivered in the Bush the Younger years starting in 2001. Mitt Romney is an unlikely neocon, but never rule out the abilities of the neocons to expropriate and co-opt any Republican, which is certainly what they did with GW Bush, an unlikely mish-mash of born-again fundamentalism and Karl Rove snakeoil.
Neoconservatives are not the evangelical mullahs, normally. However, it is apparent that Bush neither spoke like a true evangelical, any more than he spoke with authority on military matters. He wished to control those two machines without properly understanding either. Bush was the only character able to unite the various wings of the Republican party as effectively as he did. Certainly a Donald Rumsfeld or a Paul Wolfowitz would not naturally do so—their neoconservativism would almost certainly fail to draw the xenophobic unsophisticates like Bush’s did. For all his innumerable flaws, he possessed that unique political strength, recognized and utilized by Rove.
Many analysts are almost convinced that the neocons are so driven and so morally feckless that they are capable of sociopathic cynicism resulting in profitable violence. One writes: “shock and awe is less effective at subduing official enemies—an enemy resisting the on-high dictates of the global elite and their uncompromising demand to be allowed to steal natural resources and other profitable goodies—than subverting resistance through ‘stealth and counter-subversion.’ It should not be surprising that Mr. Henriksen [Senior Fellow, Hoover Institution and U.S. Joint Special Operations University] would mention Machiavelli, one of several philosophers adored by the neocons (others include Leo Strauss and his mentor, the Nazi jurist Carl Schmitt). Machiavelli was an advocate of tyranny, cruelty, and fraudulence—sociopathic traits clearly reflected in the Bush administration.”
Within the Republican party itself, the neoconservatives are special. “In the foreign policy arena the Republicans have four ideological factions: the libertarians, whose last presidential candidate was Steve Forbes; the old right nationalists, whose last presidential candidate was Pat Buchanan; the conservative realists, who until recent years were the party establishment; and the neoconservatives.
The real danger of the neocons is that they have resources and paid staffers with Ph.D.s and other serious credentials, and they always plan ahead for taking advantage of windows of opportunity when they appear. Be watchful; their influence on Romney will assert itself sooner or later, under the waterline until it is able to roar into view with policies that will drive us back to Bush's worst stupidity, most disastrous cupidity. Indeed, the neocons are one reason to consider voting defensively this fall, despite all Obama's deep disappointments. How long will we have such "choices"?
 Dorrien, Gary, “Consolidating the empire: Neoconservatism and the politics of American dominion,” Political Theology, Oct2005, Vol. 6 Issue 4, p409-428, Academic Search Premier, retrieved 21 May 2006.