St. Paul, MN  (KROC-AM News) - A member of the Minnesota Legislature is under fire for his attempt at a joke involving the bird flu.

Edina Democrat Ron Erhardt went to the floor of the State House Tuesday wearing a lab coat and stethoscope. He told fellow lawmakers he felt flu symptoms over the weekend after eating turkey and held up a jar labeled “bird flu vaccine” and said it would slow the virus down. Members of both political parties immediately criticized him for what they termed a tasteless joke.

Coincidentally, the failed attempt at humor occurred the same day lawmakers of both parties served turkey burgers to hundreds of people at the State Capitol in an effort to emphasize that the ongoing bird flu crisis does not pose a threat to food safety.

Meanwhile, the daily update on bird flu activity in Minnesota shows tests have found two more presumptive outbreaks in Kandiyohi County. There no been a total of 82 outbreaks in the state affecting almost 5 ½ million turkeys and chickens.

photo by Minnesota House of Representatives
photo by Minnesota House of Representatives

(The Associated Press contributed to this story)

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