Washington, Dec 26:US President Donald Trump said he was proud to wish people a Merry Christmas, and so defend the beautiful time-honoured phrase against political correctness. "People are proud to be saying Merry Christmas again. I am proud to have led the charge against the assault of our cherished and beautiful phrase. MERRY CHRISTMAS!!!!!" Trump said on Twitter. The President has insistently criticized the use of the expression "Happy Holidays" instead of "Merry Christmas" as a lack of respect for religious values, and has blamed progressives for what, in his opinion, is an offence against American citizens, Efe reported. Conservative evangelical movements, which make up part of Trump's base, have spread the scare of a "war on Christmas" being waged by secular elements of society and the politically correct, a concept first aired by former Fox News host Bill O'Reilly. This Sunday, in a message to US troops deployed abroad, the president noted that "we say Christmas again very proudly." Trump has lamented the move against Christmas promoted by his predecessor Barack Obama during his two terms in the White House, though the former president habitually used the expression. The US president is spending the Christmas holidays with his family at Mar-a-Lago, his private residence in Florida.