Salon owner Erica Kious told a Zoom press conference on Thursday that Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) was lying to say she was “set up,” and that she should apologize to America and to small business owners and workers struggling to survive.
Pelosi was caught on surveillance camera attending Kious’s salon earlier this week for a private hair appointment indoors with a stylist, Jonathan DeNardo. San Francisco and Alameda counties are still not allowing salons to reopen indoors due to going coronavirus restrictions.
Pelosi was criticized for breaking rules her party created, and failing to lead by example.
A spokesperson for the Speaker said she did not know that she was breaking the rules, and blamed the salon for the violation.
On Wednesday, Pelosi doubled down, telling reporters she fell for a “setup” and that the salon owner should apologize to her.
The Pelosi camp energetically pushed the idea that Kious had acted out of political motives, circulating a letter from an attorney for DeNardo that accused Kious of operating her salon at other times during the shutdown, and of making “vitriolic and incendiary comments” about Pelosi. Pelosi’s daughter, Christine, posted the letter on Twitter with the hashtag “#Setup”.
— Christine Pelosi (@sfpelosi) September 3, 2020
On Thursday, Kious responded. She denied that there had been any setup, saying that Pelosi’s “assertion that she is a victim and was set up” was “totally false and outrageous.”
She said that she had lost six months’ of income due to the coronavirus shutdowns, but had allowed stylists to make appointments if they needed money.
Choking back tears, Kious added:
For the Speaker of the House of the United States to go on TV and falsely claim she was set up, and publicly defame me and send out PR firms to spin more lies … is bad enough, but for Speaker Pelosi to frame herself as a victim under a total false narrative while small businesses and workers all over California, the state she represents in Congress, suffer and struggle just to survive is beyond shameful.
I don’t owe anyone an apology; Mrs. Pelosi owes the entire country an apology.
Kious said that her motive in sharing the video of Pelosi’s appointment was to encourage her and other politicians to allow businesses to reopen.
“If a woman in a high-risk age group who spends much of her time on TV warning about the dangers of COVID-19 feels safe and comfortable in a San Francisco salon and can be responsible for being cautious and mindful, why can’t the rest of San Francisco, and the rest of America, do that, too?”
She said that Pelosi was showing by her actions that the draconian rules were unnecessary for safety.
Joel B. Pollak is Senior Editor-at-Large at Breitbart News and the host of Breitbart News Sunday on Sirius XM Patriot on Sunday evenings from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m. ET (4 p.m. to 7 p.m. PT). His new book, RED NOVEMBER, tells the story of the 2020 Democratic presidential primary from a conservative perspective. He is a winner of the 2018 Robert Novak Journalism Alumni Fellowship. Follow him on Twitter at @joelpollak.