President Obama rejects idea of revoking Bill Cosby freedom medal

When President Barack Obama is asked about the sexual allegations surrounding Bill Cosby at a White House press conference, he says he has no tolerance for rape. The Times' Christy Khoshaba has the details.

President Obama is rejecting the idea of taking back Bill Cosby's Presidential Medal of Freedom, saying there's no mechanism in place for such a move.

But -- without specifically accusing the embattled comedian -- the president added that "any civilized country should have no tolerance for rape."


At a Wednesday press conference, Obama was asked about a petition begun by a nonprofit victims' rights group that asked the White House to revoke the honor bestowed on Cosby by President George W. Bush in 2002.

Cosby has been accused by dozens of women of giving them drugs and sexually assaulting them in incidents dating back to when he was a star of "The Cosby Show" and earlier. In a deposition released last week, Cosby admitted under oath that he gave women Quaaludes in order to have sex with them.

Obama said there is no precedent or process for revoking a Medal of Freedom.

But he added: "If you give a woman -- or a man, for that matter -- without his or her knowledge, a drug, and then have sex with that person without consent, that's rape.

"Any civilized country should have no tolerance for rape," Obama added.

What do you think of Obama's remarks? Should the medal be revoked even if that means taking an unprecedented step?

Twitter: @scottcollinsLAT