(CNN) – Rep. Steve King, R-Iowa, reiterated his stance Thursday that President Barack Obama is "spiteful" and blamed him for the closure of the World War II Memorial in Washington, D.C.
Referring to the government's increasing debt, he argued that Obama was "borrowing money from the Chinese to rent barricades" for the open-air memorial.
"The president has no controlling legal authority to lock people out, but we know that he's spiteful, he's trying to teach America a lesson," he told CNN's Carol Costello.
The six-term conservative congressman who represents the northwest part of Iowa has long been a vocal critic of the president.
While the National Mall and monuments are officially closed, the Department of Interior and the National Park Service pledged to work with elderly Honor Flight veterans to ensure they can visit the memorial, citing First Amendment rights.
The National Park Service also said groups can apply for permits for protests, like one group did on Tuesday in favor of comprehensive immigration reform.
"Under the same First Amendment rights that are allowing Honor Flight veterans and their families to visit the veterans memorials on the National Mall, other groups will be granted access to the park for First Amendment activities," National Park Service spokesman Michael Litterst said.
Asked last week whether the White House had any say in the closure of the memorial, spokesman Jay Carney said Republicans were at fault.
"Every House Republican who has decried any impact from this shutdown as if they were surprised that it would happen clearly didn't pay attention when every agency of the federal government posted on their websites...what would happen if the government were shut down, including the closing of national memorials and national parks," he said at a press briefing.
"If any member of Congress who got in front of a television camera to try to get some attention on this issue spent half that time on the floor of the House voting to open the government, we wouldn't have a problem," he added.