NASA has given multiple strides to scientific progress, and minimizing their efforts to small local projects instead of literally shooting for the stars. The benefits of deep-space research may provide us with answers to oil-dependency, or even give humanity a new home on a different planet. If NASA gives up its progress into deep-space, we may lose a grand opportunity to make humanity great.
I am not sure if NASA should focus on any particular area. So much of space is unexplored, and there is so much that can be learned from space exploration. NASA should develop long-range plans to explore deep space as well as other not-so-deep space based on what is economically feasible and what the benefits of targeted exploration may be.
I think that if NASA has a limited budget and has to prioritize, they should spend their money on aspects of space that directly affect us here on earth. The immediate area surrounding earth should be the priority, with perhaps some focus on the potential colonization of nearer planets as we deal with an ever expanding population.
No, NASA should not focus its limited budget on deep space, because there are a lot of things close by that might have more practical applications. We might actually be able to colonize the moon. It is more practical to focus our efforts on that. Private businesses have not jumped in to fill the void, so this remains important work for NASA.