An MSNBC host didn’t bother to ask about the controversy surrounding House Speaker Nancy Pelosi's trip to a San Franciso hair salon ‒ in violation of state and local ordinances amid the coronavirus pandemic ‒ when the Democratic leader joined the liberal network on Sunday.
Maria Teresa Kumar filled in for Joy Reid on MSNBC’s “AM Joy” when she gave Pelosi a pass “with a softball interview exclusively focused on attacking President Trump,” according to Media Research Center analyst Kristine Marsh.
“Amazingly, Kumar gave the Democrat leader a 14-minute interview and not ONE question about Pelosi hypocritically violating her own city’s coronavirus guidelines to visit a salon and get her hair done indoors at the end of August, maskless,” Marsh wrote.
In security footage obtained by Fox News and time-stamped Monday at 3:08 p.m. PT, the California political powerhouse is seen walking through ESalonSF with wet hair, and without a mask over her mouth or nose. The footage dominated the news cycle with many blasting Pelosi as a hypocrite. Kumar, who is the president of Voto Latino, had a chance to ask Pelosi directly about the controversy but declined.
“Instead, Kumar spent all her energy on spreading Democrat conspiracies about President Trump trying to suppress votes by opposing universal mail-in ballots and using Russian help to steal the election,” Marsh addded.
Salons in San Francisco had been closed since March and were only notified that they could reopen on Sept. 1 for outdoor hairstyling services only. As a result, Pelosi has been slammed from both sides of the aisle for visiting a salon that is closed to average citizens amid a global pandemic.
Pelosi addressed the backlash last week, claiming she was “set up” at the hair salon by the owner, Erica Kious, adding that she had been there “over the years many times.”
Kious, who denied she set Pelosi up, said she viewed the visit as a double standard.
“It was a slap in the face that she went in, you know, that she feels that she can just go and get her stuff done while no one else can go in, and I can’t work,” Kious told Fox News, adding that she “can’t believe” the speaker didn’t have a mask on. (From the footage, it appears Pelosi had some kind of covering around her neck.)
The ordeal has even resulted in protesters gathering outside Pelosi’s home, but the MSNBC guest host didn’t bother to ask about it.
GOP rapid response director Steve Guest also took notice, tweeting it was “unbelievable” that Pelosi wasn’t asked about the scandal.
“Nancy Pelosi appeared on MSNBC's AM Joy this morning with Maria Teresa Kumar and there were ZERO questions about Pelosi's abject disrespect for COVID rules,” Guest wrote.
Marsh noted that Pelosi was asked about a widely disputed story recently published by The Atlantic that cited anonymous sources claiming Trump made offensive remarks about fallen American soldiers.
“So MSNBC had time to ask Pelosi about a fake scandal of the president’s, but no time to ask about her own real one, actually caught on tape? Which she still hasn’t apologized for,” Marsh wrote.
Fox News’ Brooke Singman and David Aaro contributed to this report.