Former Arkansas Governor Mike Huckabee returned to Iowa Wednesday to support the gubernatorial candidacy of businessman Bob Vander Plaats, the most vociferous opponent of gay marriage running for the job.

Speaking to a crowd of about 100 people at a fundraiser for the Iowa Family PAC, the political action committee managed by the Iowa Family Policy Center Action, a group that opposes gay rights, Huckabee called Vander Plaats an ideal candidate.

“If Bob were governor, Iowa would not be one of those states that people scratched their heads and say, 'They have same-sex marriage?'” Huckabee said.

While all Republican Iowa gubernatorial candidates have sided with social conservatives who are rankled at Democratic leaders for blocking a resolution calling for an amendment in the Iowa constitution that would ban gay marriage and reverse last year's state Supreme Court order legalizing the institution, Vander Plaats, who often speaks about the issue at anti-gay marriage rallies, has a padlock on the issue. He's pledged, if elected, to halt gay weddings with an executive order until the issue is decided by voters. Most analysts have said such a move would not be legal.

“Having been a governor for 10 and a half years, I think I know something about the qualities that make for a good governor. I find every one in Bob,” he added.

The former Baptist minister does not believe gays should be allowed to serve in the military and supports a constitutional amendment defining marriage as a heterosexual union.

In November, he told CBS' Katie Couric that if you alter marriage to include gay couples “then there is really no limit” to how it might be defined and suggested polygamy would soon follow.

Huckabee also told attendees that 2010 would be a turning point for the GOP.