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article imageWas it the raw milk? Several lawmakers sick after tasting a cup

By Karen Graham     Mar 10, 2016 in Food
Charleston - Lawmakers in West Virginia were celebrating the signing of a bill allowing for the sale of raw milk last week by drinking a cup of the milk from a local dairy. Within hours and days of consumption of the milk, many got sick.
On March 3, West Virginia Governor Earl Ray Tomblin signed Senate Bill 387, allowing for the distribution of raw milk in the state through herd-share agreements. The bill officially becomes law in May, according to the Farm to Consumer Legal Defense Fund.
To celebrate the bill signing, Eater reports that Delegate Scott Cadle passed out cups of raw milk from a local farm in his district for some of his colleagues to try. Some of the lawmakers drank the unpasteurized milk while others just took a sip, but coincidence, or not, many of them became ill within hours and days of consuming the milk.
It would have ended right there because there was a "stomach bug" going around the capitol, and a number of people who had not consumed the milk got sick, too. But an anonymous complaint was received by the state's Department of Health and Human Resources.
So now, WSAZ.com is reporting that state health department officials have to investigate the illnesses, and why one person is complaining the raw milk was illegally given to the lawmakers and made them sick.
Some delegates, like Pat McGeehan (R - Hancock, 01), who is quite sick himself, say that a recent stomach bug has been making the rounds for weeks. Even Scott Cadle is out sick this week with the stomach illness. He told reporters, “It ain’t because of the raw milk. With that many people around and that close quarters and in that air and environment, I just call it a big germ.”
McGeehan was interviewed by local news in his office, while he lay on a sofa, his hand over his face, moaning about stomach cramps. He said, "I had a small sip and walked away and tossed the rest of it. I highly doubt raw milk had anything to do with it, in my case."
It is entirely possible the stomach bug going around the state capitol building has nothing to do with the consumption of raw milk. It sounds more like it could be the norovirus. With all the symptoms, including diarrhea and vomiting, if it is norovirus, the big question is why in the devil are these people at work? All they are doing is spreading the virus around.
More about Raw milk, West Virginia, Celebrating, lawmakers sick, Investigation
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