Obama at E. coli risk? What does a medium-well hamburger mean?

U.S. President Barack Obama and VP Joe Biden (right, photo from AP) ordered a couple of medium-well hamburgers for lunch today at Ray’s Hell Burger in Virginia, and while media and blog reports were the usual gaga over, OMG, the President ate, no one asked, what does medium-well mean? Was the President at risk of contracting foodborne illness like the other 83 million American mortals each year?

Color is a lousy indicator. And who knows what medium-well means from one mom-and-pop shop to the next. One of the blogs is already having a heated discussion about what medium-well means and not one person has mentioned temperature.

Anyone out there want to do a graduate degree? Go to 100 burger joints, order burgers, and when they ask how would you like it cooked, ask the server, what does that mean. See if anyone mentions temperature. Write up the various responses in a methodologically sound way. You may save a President.