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Bush Aide Claude Allen Charged With Shoplifting

Bush's former domestic policy advisor, Claude Allen, whom Bush nominated for a seat on the 4th Circuit Court of Appeals in April, 2003, has been charged with felony shoplifting. Who is Claude Allen? Mr. Allen is no low-level staffer.

Allen was the No. 2 official in the Health and Human Services Department when Bush nominated him in April 2003 to the 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Richmond, Va. Bush nominated Allen to the court again a year later, but he never received a Senate vote.

Bush then made him his domestic policy advisor. From the first link above:

Deputy Secretary of Health and Human Services Claude Allen, President Bush's nominee to the Fourth Circuit, is a staunch social conservative with long-standing connections to the right wing of the Republican Party. He has devoted much of his career to advancing the agenda of the religious right on issues such as reproductive rights, sex education, AIDS, gay and lesbian rights, welfare, and the right to die. He is a board member of Peacemaker Ministries, an organization that espouses the view that litigation is a destructive way of dealing with conflict, a troubling position for a person who would be responsible for dispensing fair and impartial justice to those who bring lawsuits as well as those who defend them.
Allen's nomination provokes concern for a number of reasons.

First, he lacks the experience normally required for the federal bench - he has never been a judge and, in the thirteen years since he finished law school, he has spent at most eight years practicing law.1 Second, in the course of his career as a political appointee for former Virginia Governor James Gilmore and President Bush, Allen has amassed a troubling record of extreme, right-wing policies that is more befitting a partisan ideologue than an unbiased jurist. Third, Allen's behavior toward those that disagree with him, along with his frequent hostile or threatening comments, suggest that he is temperamentally unfit to be a federal judge.

Doug Ireland wrote:

President Bush's appointment of his new chief domestic-policy adviser, Claude Allen - a notorious homophobe, a ferocious enemy of abortion and an opponent of safe-sex education who for years has been one of the AIDS community's principal enemies - is a huge victory for the social reactionaries of the Christian right.

"Allen, who was named to his new position in the White House last week, had previously been a top aide at the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS). He was placed there by Karl Rove as a watchdog on then - HHS Secretary Tommy Thompson, who had an exaggerated reputation as a "moderate" and who wasn't entirely trusted by Rove to carry out - by administrative order - the social agenda of the Christian right, a key part of Rove's successful plan to mobilize millions of Christer voters for Bush's re-election."

When Allen suddenly resigned on Feb. 9, no one knew why. The adminstration said he wanted to spend more time with his family. Now, they are backtracking and throwing him under the bus:

The president first learned of Allen's planned departure and the January incident in early February, but since Allen had passed the usual background checks and had no other prior issues that White House officials were aware of, "He was given the benefit of the doubt," McClellan said.

"If it is true, no one would be more shocked and more outraged than the president," McClellan said. Allen has had no contact with the White House since his arrest.

More on the shoplifting:

Allen has been under investigation since at least January for the alleged thefts on 25 occasions at Target and Hecht's stores, said police spokesman Lt. Eric Burnett. Police reviewed his credit card records to track his purchase.

Police believe Allen would buy items, take them to his car, then return to the store with his receipt. He would select the same items, then take them to the store return desk and show the receipt from the first purchase. Using that method, he would receive credit for the second items on his credit cards, Burnett said.

Digby has lots more on Mr. Allen.

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  • Re: Bush Aide Claude Allen Charged With Shopliftin (none / 0) (#1)
    by Che's Lounge on Fri Mar 10, 2006 at 09:53:02 PM EST
    Then give him a toothbrush, put him on a plane, and send his a** to Iraq where he can ply his trade unencumbered. And not the Green Zone either. See how long he lasts. I'm sure he loves this war his bosses created.

    Gee, that phone booth where they're havin' the black republican convention is gettin' lonelier and lonelier all the time.

    Re: Bush Aide Claude Allen Charged With Shopliftin (none / 0) (#3)
    by TomStewart on Sat Mar 11, 2006 at 12:26:23 AM EST
    This not only the most corrupt administration in history (sorry Nixon and Harding!) but is has to be the STUPIDIST admin in history! Shoplifting?! Holy Geeze!

    Re: Bush Aide Claude Allen Charged With Shopliftin (none / 0) (#4)
    by scarshapedstar on Sat Mar 11, 2006 at 01:40:05 AM EST
    He has devoted much of his career to advancing the agenda of the religious right on issues such as reproductive rights, sex education, AIDS, gay and lesbian rights, welfare, and the right to die.
    Hahaha. What is the religious right's agenda on these issues? "None of the above?"

    If he'd been given a seat on the bench his bribery fees likely would've been in more people's price range.

    What'd he steal? Hand soap?

    Re: Bush Aide Claude Allen Charged With Shopliftin (none / 0) (#7)
    by jimakaPPJ on Sat Mar 11, 2006 at 09:01:31 AM EST
    et al - I guess innocent until proven guilty applies only to Lefties. If true, this is sad. Plus it doesn't make a lot of sense as the items stolen couldn't have been worth a lot in actual value, or when re-sold/fenced. Sounds like this guy needs a head Doctor.

    This is just slams another nail in the Bringing back honor to the WH promise. When will the wingnuts realize they support one of the most inept bunch of clowns to ever occupy the executive branch? PPJ Haven't you ever heard of keeping and protecting even the appearance of integrity. wether you like it or not. This reflects badly on Bushbag and his mis-adminstration.

    Sad? Only because it is (another) example of the kind of whack-job that rises to a high position in the Administration and the GOP. Misunderstanding? 25 counts. A lot of little misunderstandings that he will have the opportunity to explain.

    Claude Allen promises not to advance a political agenda from the federal bench he has been nominated to, but to be the type of judge who buttresses the foundation of American government -- by applying the rule of law however he finds it. President Bush, and the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit, could do much worse than Allen. By the grace of democratic principles overriding a minority in the Senate, let us hope they do not have to. -- Former White House Counsel C. Boyden Gray is chairman of the Committee for Justice.

    Re: Bush Aide Claude Allen Charged With Shopliftin (none / 0) (#11)
    by Sailor on Sat Mar 11, 2006 at 10:17:13 AM EST
    If true, this is sad. Plus it doesn't make a lot of sense as the items stolen couldn't have been worth a lot in actual value, or when re-sold/fenced.
    One has to wonder if this commenter EVER reads the story.
    Claude Alexander Allen, 45, was arrested Thursday by Montgomery County police for allegedly claiming refunds for more than $5,000 worth of merchandise he did not buy, according to county and federal authorities. [...] Police believe Allen would buy items, take them to his car, then return to the store with his receipt. He would select the same items, then take them to the store return desk and show the receipt from the first purchase. Using that method, he would receive credit for the second items on his credit cards, Burnett said.


    Re: Bush Aide Claude Allen Charged With Shopliftin (none / 0) (#12)
    by fafnir on Sat Mar 11, 2006 at 10:44:25 AM EST
    Gotta love those Bush Crime Family values.

    Re: Bush Aide Claude Allen Charged With Shopliftin (none / 0) (#13)
    by nolo on Sat Mar 11, 2006 at 10:44:49 AM EST
    PPJ, I'm all about the presumption of innocence, but stuff like this news report is pretty damming:
    According to police, on January 2, a Target manager at a store in Gaithersburg observed Allen in the store with an empty Target bag in a shopping cart. "The man was then seen selecting merchandise throughout the store and placing items in the Target bag. He put additional items in his cart. The man then went to guest services where he produced a receipt and received a refund for the items he had just selected from the store shelves. After receiving the refund, he left the store without paying for the additional merchandise in the shopping cart," the police statement said. He was apprehended by the store employee, and police were contacted. "Through the police investigation it was learned that Allen had been receiving refunds in an amount exceeding $5,000 during last year," the statement said.
    You can read the rest here.

    Re: Bush Aide Claude Allen Charged With Shopliftin (none / 0) (#14)
    by john horse on Sat Mar 11, 2006 at 12:11:37 PM EST
    Allen was in charge of the White House Katrina task force in the early days of that disaster. Bush sure knows how to pick 'em.

    Re: Bush Aide Claude Allen Charged With Shopliftin (none / 0) (#15)
    by DonS on Sat Mar 11, 2006 at 02:51:05 PM EST
    Oh man, I love it. Jim shows up just in time to defend the rights of a poor and downtrodden brother. Not a peep when it comes to torture; nary a whisper when it comes to executing imbeciles. But a totally whacked out, dyed-in-the-wool front man for every fascist idea to impose extremist right wing ideas on the rest of and, by God, here's Jim riding to the rescue reminding us of proper judicial etiquette. Great to have ya back fella. Heckuva job. Pardon my hyperbole, you're just so predictable. Kind of like the resident straw man.

    Re: Bush Aide Claude Allen Charged With Shopliftin (none / 0) (#16)
    by DonS on Sat Mar 11, 2006 at 02:59:18 PM EST
    And, yeah, Allen probably has got some diagnosable features. Many do. Living with a contorted psyche for years will do that for you. However, he has a hell of a lot better chance geting both good legal and mental health advice than any of my clients who, with similar modus, wind up under the jail before anyone says, ahem, ahem, habeas corpus, blah blah blah. Meanwhile, Mr. Allen is free on his own recognizance. Maybe Karl vouched for him. Oh, I forgot, the WH crew didn't know.

    Re: Bush Aide Claude Allen Charged With Shopliftin (none / 0) (#17)
    by DonS on Sat Mar 11, 2006 at 03:45:43 PM EST
    JRT, if by a "liberal project" you mean a graduate of the Jesse Helms organization, the Jim Gilmore organization, and the Junior Bush orgainzation, I have to say your dead wrong. Might you be projecting? Even thrashing about for anything to say that merges words into a seemingly coherent thought?

    Re: Bush Aide Claude Allen Charged With Shopliftin (none / 0) (#18)
    by Johnny on Sat Mar 11, 2006 at 03:48:47 PM EST
    The poor SOB... There are better ways to make money illegally. JRT, if you can show me, without a doubt, that a black man consistently got a fair shake before affirmative action, feel free. Thats what really ticks the wrong-wingers off about Affirmative action... They have to find reasons other than "We ain't gonna have none of them working here..." to not hire minorities.

    JRt What makes you think Affirmative action had antything to do with this clowns hireing? When did the Bushbag Admin ever say they hired based on Race or quotas? It is quite clear you have exposed yourself as a racist. No one here ever mentioned anything about race neither has the press or the WH, only you. I exspect you will apologize for your over the top racist slur.

    Re: Bush Aide Claude Allen Charged With Shopliftin (none / 0) (#20)
    by Sailor on Sat Mar 11, 2006 at 04:10:26 PM EST
    You liberals insist on affirmative action and then when when of your projects screw up you scream about how corrupt Bush is. It is amazing.
    Ahhh, yes, 'libs' created this monster in our labs and injected him into the Bushco body politic. JRT, there is an underpinning of a bridge that needs your support, please slither back under it and troll no more upon these exalted shores.[/snark]

    Re: Bush Aide Claude Allen Charged With Shopliftin (none / 0) (#21)
    by john horse on Sat Mar 11, 2006 at 07:51:13 PM EST
    I love the logic employed by some of my rightwing friends. Remember when politicians like Bush were telling us that the GOP was the party of personal responsibility? So when a Bush conservative/fundamentalist apointee screws up it is all the fault of liberals. Yeah, right. This is the same logic that expects the victim of a gunshot to apologize to the guy that shot him.

    Re: Bush Aide Claude Allen Charged With Shopliftin (none / 0) (#22)
    by jimakaPPJ on Sun Mar 12, 2006 at 08:14:55 AM EST
    sailor - You do love to attack me, eh? Tell me. Do you really consider $5000 a large amount of money? Do you think a rational person would steal that amount knowing he could lose the position he had? nolo - All I know is that everytime I want to hang some terrorists everyone starts demanding full up USA type trials for them.

    Well, if they're terrorists, jim. I'm sure ya won't have any trouble provin' it. It's just like the wmd thing. Rummy knew exactly where they were. They were right where he said they were. And there was even more of 'em than he thought. Shrub's a straight shooter. A man of unimpeachable integrity. He says what he means and he means what he says just like you and your boys say.

    Re: Bush Aide Claude Allen Charged With Shopliftin (none / 0) (#24)
    by Edger on Sun Mar 12, 2006 at 08:41:12 AM EST
    demanding full up USA type trials for them
    Initial Complaint Charging George Bush, J. Danforth Quayle, James Baker, Richard Cheney, William Webster, Colin Powell, Norman Schwarzkopf and Others to be named With Crimes Against Peace, War Crimes, Crimes Against Humanity and Other Criminal Acts and High Crimes in Violation of the Charter of the United Nations, International Law, the Constitution of the United States and Laws made in Pursuance Thereof.


    Posted by JimakaPPJ March 11, 2006 10:01 AM
    et al - I guess innocent until proved guilty applies only to Lefties.
    If true, this is sad. Plus it doesn't make a lot of sense as the items stolen couldn't have been worth a lot in actual value, or when re-sold/fenced. Sounds like this guy needs a head Doctor.
    Gee, don't you have a firm grasp of the obvious. He's a black republican. That's like a Greenbaum with a swastika armband. Suffice it to say, rational was never in the picture. Yeah, he's got some issues. Spare me the innocent 'til proved guilty garbage. That's a Court of Law. Nobody is lockin' him up. We're talkin' Court of Public Opinion and Appearance of Impropriety here and on that basis, the whole damned administration and republican congress might just as well take a blindfold and a cigarette, line up and get it over with. As for his legal difficulties, I'm sure I have all the sympathies and concerns you could muster for Winona Ryder in similar circumstances.

    Re: Bush Aide Claude Allen Charged With Shopliftin (none / 0) (#26)
    by jimakaPPJ on Sun Mar 12, 2006 at 09:21:55 AM EST
    charlie writes:
    We're talkin' Court of Public Opinion and Appearance of Impropriety here
    That's what they said about Richard Jewel. BTW - Nice hit on Goodwin/Godwin's (you pik'em) law re Nazis. You seem to be there regularly.

    We're talkin' Court of Public Opinion and Appearance of Impropriety here That's what they said about Richard Jewel.
    BTW - Nice hit on Goodwin/Godwin's (you pik'em) law re Nazis. You seem to be there regularly.
    And you seem to give me plenty of clear exceptions, Herr Jim. Richard Jewell! That's a good one. What would I do with out you, Jim? Don't ever leave me. I could make this stuff up, but I'm glad I don't have to. You could not have picked anyone who fits the roll of the anti-Richard Jewell any better. Do they have Richard Jewell on tape doin' the bogus refund swap? That's what I thought. This clown worked for Jesse Helms - he of the anti- MLK Holiday and infamous '90 race-baiting ad with the hand and the crumpled job rejection notice. And reptiles wonder why they're at 2 percent Black support.

    Re: Bush Aide Claude Allen Charged With Shopliftin (none / 0) (#28)
    by nolo on Sun Mar 12, 2006 at 10:06:04 AM EST
    nolo - All I know is that everytime I want to hang some terrorists everyone starts demanding full up USA type trials for them.
    PPJ, no one here's said that Claude Allen shouldn't have a trial, or that Claude Allen should be hung.

    Posted by JRT March 11, 2006 04:14 PM
    You liberals insist on affirmative action and then when when of your projects screw up you scream about how corrupt Bush is. It is amazing.
    Yes, the shrub administration outsourced their minority outreach and all screening and hiring of minority personnel to me since I was the only one who passed their intense battery of security tests and exhaustive SS interviews. I researched Claude Allen thoroughly. He met all of my criteria. He worked for Jesse Helms during his opposition to the MLK Holiday. He was involved in the infamous '90 race-baiting. crumpled job rejection ad. He's a total religious fanatic that would rather see people die than receive condoms and he was open to charges of hypocrisy since he'd had klepto episodes in the past and with his name setting up so nicely for claude the fraud, he was just a natural so of course I gave him a thumbs up to shrub and shooter. Christ, pal, there's your usual psychotic nonsense charges, then there's this.

    Re: Bush Aide Claude Allen Charged With Shopliftin (none / 0) (#30)
    by Edger on Sun Mar 12, 2006 at 10:29:03 AM EST
    You're in good form today Charlie! ;-)

    Re: Bush Aide Claude Allen Charged With Shopliftin (none / 0) (#31)
    by jimakaPPJ on Sun Mar 12, 2006 at 10:45:12 AM EST
    charlie - So if you think he is guilty he should then be smeared? nolo - For goodness sake. Have you read anything charlie commented?

    Re: Bush Aide Claude Allen Charged With Shopliftin (none / 0) (#32)
    by john horse on Sun Mar 12, 2006 at 10:48:28 AM EST
    PPJ is right. People are presumed innocent until proven guilty. With that in mind here is my incomplete list of the GOP politicians and/or supporters who should be presumed innocent until proven guilty. Indicted Rep. Tom Delay (R-Tx) Scooter Libby - Vice President Cheney's Chief of Staff David Safavian - former chief of staff for the General Services Administration James Tobin - former New England Regional Political Director for the Republian National Committee John Colyandro - Executive Director of Tom DeLay's PAC Texans for a Republican Majority Jim Ellis - Executive Director of DeLay's PAC Americans for a Republican Majority Warren RoBold - fundraiser for Tom DeLay's PACs Under Investigation Karl Rove - President Bush's senior advisor Rep. Bob Ney (R-OH) Sen. Conrad Burns (R-MT) Rep. John Doolittle (R-CA) Sen. Bill Frist (R-TN) Unfortunately, the presumption of innocence no longer applies to Jack Abramoff and Rep. Duke Cunningham (R-CA) since they have been found guilty (sorry PPJ).

    Re: Bush Aide Claude Allen Charged With Shopliftin (none / 0) (#33)
    by nolo on Sun Mar 12, 2006 at 11:09:09 AM EST
    PPJ, I read everything in the thread. I'm also able to read for comprehension.

    Re: Bush Aide Claude Allen Charged With Shopliftin (none / 0) (#34)
    by Sailor on Sun Mar 12, 2006 at 12:26:14 PM EST
    ppj, no I don't like to attack you, I just have a natural aversion to lies. And yes, I do consider $5k a large amount of money, because it's large enough to be a felony. BTW, the amount was over $10k, over $5k in merchandise + over $5k in cash. Tho I grant you as rethuglican crimes go it is small change, keep in mind this is just what he got caught for. And there is no comparison to Jewell, that's just a strawman you erect when you, as usual, don't have facts on your side.
    Nice hit on Goodwin/Godwin's (you pik'em)
    One doesn't get to pick facts, when you say goodwin, it is a lie and an insult to professor Godwin.

    Posted by edger March 12, 2006 11:29 AM
    You're in good form today Charlie! ;-)
    Hey, what can I say, edge. I just take what they give me. If they're gonna keep tossin' salad, I'm gonna keep makin' like James Brown and takin' 'em to the bridge.

    Posted by JimakaPPJ March 12, 2006 11:45 AM
    charlie - So if you think he is guilty he should then be smeared?
    nolo - For goodness sake. Have you read anything charlie commented
    How is recounting the man's resume smearing him, jim? Mind you, I'd certainly be embarrassed and ashamed if I had a resume like his, but evidently he takes a great deal of pride in helping Helms be a better racist tub of slop and compounding the sins of Katrina. How exactly did I make him do it?

    Re: Bush Aide Claude Allen Charged With Shopliftin (none / 0) (#37)
    by jimakaPPJ on Sun Mar 12, 2006 at 04:50:16 PM EST
    sailor - Your use of the word "lie" against any and all you disagree with has become very well known. I think you adapted the technique from the Demos. Again, for your informatiom, Here is the link to Goodwins Law." Please feel free to contact the poster and call them liars. And as you know that my reference to the monetary amount was to note that the man's acts were not rational. $5K in stolen goods is a very, very, very small amount when balanced against what he could, and may have, lost. But you tried to use it as an opportunity to call me a liar and say that I had not read the post. But I had. So that makes you a liar, at least if I use your standards.

    Re: Bush Aide Claude Allen Charged With Shopliftin (none / 0) (#38)
    by Sailor on Sun Mar 12, 2006 at 05:48:18 PM EST
    If you link to a lie, it is still a lie, just ask Dr. Godwin. I would suggest that instead of attacking other commenters you actually reply on topic. e.g. Bushco rep Allen is a thief. He lied to Bush, and got caught again stealing. There, see how easy it is!?

    Now let's not be so harsh on Mr. Allen until we know all the facts. I believe he was just doing research on the Bush Administration's new program to cut the deficit.

    I thought he was just gonna call the Credit Angels.