Obama says U.S. needs to invest in growing economy

ANNANDALE, Va. Mon Feb 13, 2012 11:43am EST

ANNANDALE, Va. Feb 13 (Reuters) - President Barack Obama said on Monday his new budget puts a focus on making sure the U.S. economic recovery stays on track and warned against cutting government programs too sharply in the near term.

At a campaign-style rally in Northern Virginia, Obama pushed for more money for programs like education as he highlighted themes from the fiscal 2013 budget he sent to the U.S. Congress.

"We can't cut back on those things that are important for us to grow," Obama said. He also said the economy was "speeding up" but there was still a long way to go to make sure people who need jobs can get them.