Obama: Even Programs That Work Face Cuts

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Byline: Julie Pace Associated Press

WASHINGTON -- President Barack Obama said Thursday that even government programs that work will face cuts as he looks for ways to bring down the nation's mounting deficits.

During an hour-long live interview on YouTube, Obama did not detail reductions in the spending plan he will roll out next month for the budget year that begins Oct. 1. But he did cite community action grants that support economic and development initiatives in cities as examples of good programs that probably will lose money.

Sticking to a theme in his State of the Union address Tuesday, Obama pledged to make responsible cuts and avoid moves that would hurt the economic recovery.

"These are not going to be across the board," Obama said. "We want to cut with a scalpel as opposed to a chain saw."

Paired with deficit-cutting action is his call for a new era of American competitiveness -- and higher spending on education and innovation.

"There are going to be some areas where we're going to increase," Obama said online. "We need to make sure were staying on the cutting edge of technology."

The YouTube interview was part of the administration's effort to expand its social media outreach as the White House tries to rally Obama's base around his revamped economic message.

The president used an online video to supporters last week to preview the primetime speech. His communications director, Dan Pfeiffer, joined Twitter this week and took questions. Administration officials, including Education Secretary Arne Duncan and White House economist Austan Goolsbee, answered questions from the public on the Internet.

Obama's team relied on social media during the 2008 presidential campaign to connect directly with the public. With the White House increasingly focused on Obama's re-election bid in 2012, aides say their use of social media to increase. …