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Story highlights

Donald Trump floated the prospect of boycotting Starbucks after they changes their holiday cups

"If I become president, we're all going to be saying Merry Christmas again, I can tell you," Trump told a crowd in Springfield, Illinois

Washington CNN —  

Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump weighed in on the day’s controversy on Monday, floating the prospect of boycotting Starbucks after the coffee giant announced it would abandon its Christmas-themed cups.

“I have one of the most successful Starbucks, in Trump Tower. Maybe we should boycott Starbucks? I don’t know. Seriously, I don’t care. That’s the end of that lease, but who cares?” Trump told a crowd in Springfield, Illinois, on Monday. “If I become president, we’re all going to be saying Merry Christmas again, that I can tell you. That I can tell you.”

Trump’s comments, on the eve of the next Republican presidential debate, is his latest rhetoric to win over Christian evangelicals who are much of the base in states like Iowa and South Carolina. Trump is grappling with Ben Carson, the other Republican front-runner and an evangelical favorite, in those two early voting states.

Starbucks said earlier that it had removed “symbols of the season” used in the past, which have included reindeer and ornaments, in favor of a simple, two-toned red cup. Some Christian leaders have long attacked secular businesses for waging a “War on Christmas” and prevented customers and employees from sharing Christmas greetings.

Trump previously pledged to his allegiance to Christmas during a campaign rally in October.

“I guarantee if I become president, we’re going to be saying ‘Merry Christmas’ at every store,” he had said.

Opinion: Starbucks holiday cups? PC nonsense