"President Barack Obama said on Saturday he would soon announce the elimination of dozens of wasteful or ineffective government programs as part of a broad effort to restore fiscal accountability to the federal budget.
Obama, speaking in his weekly radio address, said he would use his first full Cabinet meeting on Monday to ask department and agency heads for specific ideas to trim their budgets.
He named two new officials as part of a team of management, technology and budget experts that will drive the process of trimming the fat and waste from government spending.
"As surely as our future depends on building a new energy economy, controlling healthcare costs and ensuring that our kids are once again the best educated in the world, it also depends on restoring a sense of responsibility and accountability to our federal budget," Obama said.
"Without significant change to steer away from ever-expanding deficits and debt, we are on an unsustainable course," he added.
The United States posted a record $956.8 billion budget deficit for the first half of fiscal 2009, more than three times the shortfall of a year ago, the Treasury Department reported earlier this month.
Much of the deficit was caused by spending on financial and economic rescue programs aimed at propping up companies whose collapse could worsen the global recession.
Republicans have accused Obama and the Democratic-controlled Congress of wasteful spending. They say Obama's $3.5 trillion federal budget plan carries too much deficit spending and too few tax cuts."