The owner of the San Francisco hair salon said House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s claim that she was a victim of a “set up” are “absolutely false,” adding the aftermath of the viral video and the top Democrat accusations has led to her receiving “death threats.”
Speaking Wednesday night on Fox News “Tucker Carlson Tonight,” eSalon SF owner Erica Kious told host Tucker Carlson that she rents chairs to independent stylists, and one of the stylists informed her the night before that Pelosi booked an appointment for a wash and blow-dry treatment. The salon owner added that she “can’t control” what her stylists do if they rent chairs since they’re currently “not paying.”
“She had called a stylist in, or her assistant did and made the appointment, so the appointment was already booked, so there was no way I could’ve set that up,” Kious said. “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 is absolutely false.”
At the time of Pelosi’s appointment, salons in San Francisco had been closed since March amid the coronavirus pandemic and were allowed to reopening a day after the Speaker’s visit to operate for outdoor hairstyling services only. Face masks are strictly required to be worn during the duration of the services
Carlson brought up Pelosi remarks addressing the backlash earlier to reporters, where she claimed to have been misled by the salon for giving her the impression that it allowed to have one-on-one appointments indoors and demanded an apology from Kious for “setting me up.”
“I take responsibility for trusting the word of a neighborhood salon that I’ve been to over the years many times, and that when they said what we’re able to accommodate people, one person at a time. And that we can set up that time. I trusted that,” Pelosi said at a press conference in San Francisco Wednesday afternoon. “As it turns out – it was a setup. I think that this salon owes me an apology for setting me up.”
“How do you feel about seeing the most powerful woman in America come into your salon in violation of the rules she supports, get caught, and then blame you for it?” Carlson asked Kious.
“I heard that and I thought to myself, ‘Well as a hairstylist, I see clients one-on-one. So, that would mean that I would be open, right?’” Kious said in response, adding that she found Pelosi’s remarks “hurtful.”
Kious said she decided to release the security footage with Fox News was to expose the hypocrisy from Pelosi. The video shows the California Democrat who is an outspoken advocate of mask-wearing “comfortably” roaming the salon with wet hair, wearing a salon black robe, but not wearing a facial mask to cover her mouth or nose.
“Just to see her come in, especially her not wearing a mask, that’s what really got to me. This isn’t political, it’s the fact she came in and didn’t have a mask on,” Kious said.
“If she is in there comfortably then why are we shut down?” Kious added.
The stringent lockdowns imposed in the San Francisco area over the last six months has caused business like Kious to take a huge financial hit. According to the San Francisco Chronicle, Yelp data reveals more than 2,000 local businesses have closed down permanently amid the pandemic.
“For the past six months, I mean, we are pretty much done,” she said. “I mean, we’ve lost at least 60% of our clients. I’ve lost the majority of my staff, so six months is a long time to be closed down.”
Kious also said she has been the target of threats, hate messages, and bad online business reviews since Pelosi accused the salon of “setting her up” and called on the struggling business to apologize.
“The hard part of all this is that I have been in that community for 12 years, and since this happened I have received nothing but hate text messages, death threats,” Kious said. “They’re going to burn my hair salon down, my Yelp page is just unbelievable with bad reviews.”
“It’s just sad that my community is pulling this, when they are saying that I threw her under the bus when I didn’t. So that’s hurtful, but yeah, I think I’m pretty much done now,” she added.