U.S. President Donald Trump announced big cuts to Utah’s sprawling wilderness national monuments on Monday, angering tribes and environmental groups that want to keep the areas off limits to development.
Unlike national parks that can only be created by an act of Congress, national monuments can be designated unilaterally by presidents under the century-old Antiquities Act, a law meant to protect sacred sites, artifacts and historical objects.
Rep. Randy Neugebauer (R-TX) got into a heated exchange with a National Parks Service Ranger at the World War II Memorial over the closure of the park because of the government shutdown.
Neugebauer, one of a number of Republicans who have tried to use the closed memorial to bash the Obama administration and Democrats on the shutdown, confronted the ranger while surrounded by a crowd of onlookers.
Neugebauer asked the Ranger how she could turn World War II veterans away.
“How do you look at them and…deny them access?” the congressman asked.
“It’s difficult,” she responded.
“Well, it should be difficult,” Neugebauer snapped.
“It is difficult,” the Ranger said. “I’m sorry sir.”
“The Park Service should be ashamed of themselves,” Neugebauer said.
Ku Klux Klan (KKK) members hoping to rally on Saturday at Gettysburg, the site of one of the bloodiest battles of the U.S. Civil War, were disappointed when their plans were scuttled by a government shutdown. Amid public outrage, the National Parks had granted a permit last week to the Maryland-based Confederate White Knights of the Ku Klux Klan.