GOP presidential hopeful Herman Cain on Monday said he would hire an openly gay staffer to work in his administration as Bob Vander Plaats, the president of the anti-gay marriage group The Family Leader, stood by his side.

Cain, the former CEO of Godfather's Pizza, made his remarks during the second of three stops during the group's Presidential Lecture Series at Pella Christian High School.

After telling an estimated 140 social conservatives that laws come from God and that “the biblical purpose for government is to punish evil and encourage good,” the 65-year-old business man was asked by a Think Progress blogger if he'd be opposed to hiring a qualified openly gay staffer for a White House post.

“Nope, not at all,” he answered. “I wouldn't have a problem with that at all.”

“I just want people who – I want qualified. I want them to basically believe in the Constitution of the United States, so, yep, I don't have a problem with appointing an openly gay person. Because they're not going to try to put sharia law in our laws,” he added. (The video is embedded in the right panel of this page.)

Cain has previously said he would be uncomfortable appointing a Muslim to his administration if elected president.

Cain made his remarks with the group's leader, Bob Vander Plaats, at his side. Vander Plaats spearheaded last year's successful effort to oust three Iowa Supreme Court justices who ruled in favor of legalizing gay marriage in 2009. His group is lobbying lawmakers to approve an amendment that would define marriage as a heterosexual union in the state's constitution.

In January, Cain pledged to reinstate “Don't Ask, Don't Tell” and veto the Employment Non-Discrimination Act (ENDA) on the AFA-hosted radio program of Bryan Fischer. DADT forces gay and bisexual troops to remain closeted and celibate or risk losing their military careers, and ENDA would end workplace discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity.