- The Washington Times - Wednesday, July 8, 2015

President Obama’s top spokesman said Wednesday he’s not sure if the administration legally can strip Bill Cosby of his presidential medal of freedom.

The legendary actor and comedian was awarded the medal by then-President George W. Bush in 2002, long before allegations surfaced that Mr. Cosby sexually assaulted more than two dozen women. Recently released court documents also reveal Mr. Cosby admitting that he bought sedatives with the intention of giving them to women.

The White House is under growing pressure to revoke Mr. Cosby’s medal of freedom. The award is the nation’s highest civilian honor.

But administration officials say there are no ongoing discussions about stripping Mr. Cosby of the award, or if it can even be done at all.

“I don’t know whether or not it’s legally possible to do so,” White House press secretary Josh Earnest said, dodging questions about whether the administration is investigating its options with respect to Mr. Cosby and his medal.

The sexual assault prevention group Promoting Awareness, Victim Empowerment, this week called on the president to revoke Mr. Cosby’s medal and has started a petition to that end.

“The list of those receiving this honor include Mother Teresa, Eunice Kennedy Shriver and Meryl Streep. Bill Cosby’s name does not belong among this distinguished list,” said Angela Rose, the organization’s executive director. “Cosby admitted to procuring drugs to have sex with women without their consent. He has been accused of serial rape by dozens of others. We cannot yet give his accusers their day in court, but we can fight back in the court of public opinion.”

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