WASHINGTON (CNN) - President Barack Obama says ACORN misdeeds captured on secretly taped videos should be investigated, but that the controversy over the community service group was not occupying much of his time.
In an interview broadcast Sunday on the ABC program "This Week," Obama was asked if he supported cutting off all federal funding for ACORN - an acronym for the Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now - due to the incriminating videotapes.
"What I saw on that video was certainly inappropriate and deserves to be investigated," Obama said.
The videos were secretly taped by two individuals posing as a prostitute and a pimp. They show ACORN employees in four of the agency's offices suggesting or condoning a series of illicit actions as the couple seek advice on setting up a brothel with underage women from El Salvador.
On Wednesday, FBI Director Robert Mueller signaled a potential federal investigation of the organization. At least 11 states already had been investigating ACORN for alleged voter registration fraud stemming from the general election in 2008.
In addition, both the Senate and House have called for halting government funding to the group.
Asked if he supported cutting off government grants that ACORN applies for, Obama avoided a direct answer.
"This is not the biggest issue facing the country," he said. "It's not something I'm paying a lot of attention to."
In response to the controversy, ACORN's chief executive officer, Bertha Lewis, told FOX News Sunday she has fired anyone shown on videotape to have acted improperly, launched an independent internal review and will announce on Monday an independent audit of the organization.
Critics contend that ACORN is a left-leaning political organization involved in questionable activities while receiving federal and state government money.
On the ACORN Web site, the group founded in 1970 describes itself as "the nation's largest community organization of low- and moderate-income families, working together for social justice and stronger communities."