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Salon owner accused of setting up Nancy Pelosi says accusation is 'hurtful'

·3 min read
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  • Nancy Pelosi
    Nancy Pelosi
    Speaker of the United States House of Representatives
  • Tucker Carlson
    Tucker Carlson
    American political commentator

Erica Kious, the owner of the San Francisco salon where Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi was recorded not wearing a mask in a video released to Fox News, appeared on Wednesday’s Tucker Carlson Tonight, where she responded to Pelosi accusing the video to be a setup earlier in the day.

“I take responsibility for trusting the word of a neighborhood salon that I’ve been to over the years many times,” Pelosi said. “And that when they said we’re able to accommodate one person at a time, and that we can set up that time, I trusted that. As it turns out, it was a setup. So I take responsibility for falling for a setup.”

When Carlson asked if she had set up Pelosi, Kious answered, “No, absolutely not.”

Kious said Pelosi’s accusation was “hurtful,” adding, “She’s been coming in for quite a while, and just to see her come in, and especially not wearing a mask, that’s what really got to me. But, you know, this isn’t even political.”

Pelosi’s office released a statement on Tuesday acknowledging that she’d violated San Francisco’s new COVID-19 restrictions, which had just gone into effect the Friday before, but insisted that she complied with the rules as they were presented to her by the stylist. The statement also said that Pelosi wore her mask the entire time except when she was getting her hair washed. The video apparently shows Pelosi walking between the wash station and the styling chair.

But, while being given incorrect information about San Francisco’s new policies, and the fact that the video was given to Fox News, may have led Pelosi to believe she was set up, Kious explained why that can’t be true.

“She had called the stylist, or her assistant did, and made the appointment. So the appointment was already booked, so there was no way I could have set that up,” Kious said. “And I’ve had a camera system in there for five years. I mean, I didn’t go in there and turn cameras on as soon as she walked in and set her up. So that’s absolutely false.”

Update: The stylist who blew out Pelosi’s hair, Jonathan DeNardo, released a statement through an attorney contradicting Kious’s assertions. Following Kious’s appearance on Tucker Carlson Tonight, DeNardo claimed that not only had Kious been operating the salon in violation of state and local restrictions since April, but that she personally authorized Pelosi coming to the salon. The statement claims that Kious was critical of the House speaker because she erroneously believed Pelosi was responsible for the restrictions that shut down her salon. The statement adds that based on a simple surface-level review of Kious’s political leanings, it appears she did indeed work to set up Pelosi.

Tucker Carlson Tonight airs weeknights at 8 p.m. on Fox News Channel.

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