President Trump reignited the "war on Christmas” on Friday, telling a crowd of supporters that "we're saying merry Christmas again" now that he's president.
Speaking to a packed crowd at the Values Voter Summit in Washington, D.C., Trump argued political correctness has gotten in the way of celebrating the holiday.
“We’re getting near that beautiful Christmas season that people don’t talk about anymore. They don’t use the word Christmas because it’s not politically correct," he said to strong applause and cheers from the audience at the Christian public policy conference, sponsored by the Family Research Council.
“You go to department stores and they’ll say 'Happy New Year,' or they’ll say other things and it’ll be red, they’ll have it painted. But they don’t say — well guess what? We’re saying merry Christmas again.”
Trump went on to briefly pivot toward his push to cut taxes, calling for tax reform as a "Christmas gift."
Trump has long seized on the “war on Christmas” as a way to strengthen his support among evangelicals and Christian conservatives who, until two years ago, might have viewed the Manhattan real estate mogul warily.
He's used the argument on the campaign trail as a way to assert that political correctness is preventing Christians from expressing their religious beliefs. And to bring the point home, his campaign held a "thank you" rally in Wisconsin last December where he spoke in front of a row of large Christmas trees.
"So when I started 18 months ago, I told my first crowd in Wisconsin that we are going to come back here someday and we are going to say merry Christmas again," he said at the time. "Merry Christmas. So, merry Christmas everyone.”