CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) — A North Carolina congressman preparing for a Baptist minister as his repeat challenger in next May's Republican primary is on the airwaves professing his Christian faith and criticizing "political correctness" during the holidays.

Ninth District Rep. Robert Pittenger of Charlotte has started running cable and broadcast television ads to wish viewers a "very Merry Christmas." It's part of a multimedia campaign that Pittenger consultant Paul Shumaker said Monday could cost $100,000. With footage of protesters on the screen, the ad's narrator says some are "attacking our faith and values" and "refusing to say Merry Christmas."

Pittenger defeated the Rev. Mark Harris in the 2016 GOP primary by just 134 votes. Harris has been the longtime pastor at First Baptist Church in Charlotte. Pittenger attends a Charlotte-area evangelical church.