Obama to make his case at town hall Friday

WASHINGTON (AP) ? President Barack Obama is taking his case to the public as the clock ticks down to an Aug. 2 deadline to raise the government’s borrowing limit or default on U.S. obligations.

The president holds a town hall meeting Friday morning at the University of Maryland, College Park campus. It’s a quick trip from the Beltway but will be Obama’s first public appearance this month outside what he calls the White House “bubble.” The president has been occupied with near-daily negotiations with congressional leaders on a deal to raise the debt limit.

The town hall session comes amid some signs of progress. But Obama still faces a big selling job, given Democratic unease with cuts to Medicare and other entitlement programs and Republican opposition to tax increases.