Washington Monthly

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
Washington Monthly
Editor Paul Glastris
Frequency Monthly (1969–2008), Bimonthly (2008–present)
Circulation 10,630
First issue  1969 (1969-month)
Based in Washington, D.C.
Website www.washingtonmonthly.com
ISSN 0043-0633

Washington Monthly is a bimonthly nonprofit magazine of United States politics and government that is based in Washington, D.C.


The magazine's founder is Charles Peters, who started the magazine in 1969 and continued to write the "Tilting at Windmills" column in each issue until 2014.[1] Paul Glastris, former speechwriter for Bill Clinton, has been Washington Monthly's editor-in-chief since 2001. In 2008, the magazine switched from a monthly to a bimonthly publication schedule, citing high publication costs.

Diane Straus Tucker is the magazine's current publisher.[2] Past staff editors of the magazine include Jonathan Alter, Taylor Branch, James Fallows, Joshua Green, David Ignatius, Mickey Kaus, Nicholas Lemann, Suzannah Lessard, Jon Meacham, Timothy Noah, Joe Nocera, and Steven Waldman.[3]

In 2008, the liberal watchdog and advocacy group Common Cause considered acquiring Washington Monthly, but the deal fell apart.[4][5]

Contents and viewpoint[edit]

The politics of Washington Monthly are often considered center-left.[6][7][8] Founder Charles Peters refers to himself as a New Deal Democrat and advocates the use of government to address social problems. His columns also frequently emphasized the importance of a vigilant "fourth estate" in keeping government honest.

Washington Monthly features a continuing blog; "Political Animal" was written principally by Kevin Drum for several years, with frequent guest contributions by Washington Monthly's current and alumni editors. In 2008, Steve Benen took over as lead blogger; in 2012, he was succeeded by Ed Kilgore.[9] Kilgore left the magazine in 2015.[10]

In addition to "Political Animal," the magazine's website also hosts "Ten Miles Square," a general blog featuring posts from staff and political scientists, which debuted in 2011,[11] and "College Guide," a blog about higher education, which the magazine began offering in 2009.[12]

College rankings[edit]

Washington Monthly's annual college and university rankings,[13] a deliberate alternative college guide to U.S. News and World Report and Forbes College Rankings among domestic publications, began as a research report in 2005. It was introduced as an official set of rankings in the September 2006 issue. The rankings are based upon the following criteria:[14]

  • "how well it performs as an engine of social mobility (ideally helping the poor to get rich rather than the very rich to get very, very rich)"
  • "how well it does in fostering scientific and humanistic research"
  • "how well it promotes an ethic of service to country".[15]

The rankings focus on research outputs, the quality level and total dollar amount of scientific grants awarded, the number of graduates going on to earn Ph.D.s, and the number of graduates that later participate in public service.[16]


The Washington Monthly receives financial support from the Lumina Foundation to provide coverage of post-secondary education-related issues.[17] The magazine has also received funding from the Schumann Center for Media and Democracy,[18] the Carnegie Corporation of New York,[19] and individual supporters, including Warren Buffett and Markos Kounalakis.[3]


  1. ^ Peters, Charles. "Why bad news should always trickle up ... Polyester and merlot ... The hippest fund-raiser in New York". Washington Monthly (Jan–Feb 2014). Retrieved Nov 9, 2014. 
  2. ^ "Washington Monthly Masthead". Washington Monthly. 2010. Retrieved 2011-01-16. 
  3. ^ a b Carr, David (April 22, 2002). "New Life for Washington Watchdog". The New York Times. Retrieved 2012-06-13. 
  4. ^ Birnbaum, Jeffrey H. (19 February 2008). "Common Cause, Washington Monthly Explore a Common Future". Washington Post. Retrieved 2010-04-30. 
  5. ^ Calderone, Michael (May 27, 2008). "Washington Monthly not merging with Common Cause". Politico. Retrieved 7 December 2015. 
  6. ^ "Media Bias". Politics Unspun. 2016. Retrieved Feb 6, 2016. 
  7. ^ Kilgore, Ed (Dec 24, 2015). "Is America Really Moving Left?". New York. Retrieved Feb 6, 2016. 
  8. ^ Karlgaard, Rich (Sep 14, 2006). "Republicans For Divided Government". Forbes. Retrieved Feb 6, 2016. 
  9. ^ "And that's a wrap". Washington Monthly. January 2012. Retrieved 2012-01-31. 
  10. ^ Glastris, Paul (Nov 20, 2015). "Ed Kilgore: Some Going Away Thoughts". Washington Monthly. Retrieved Feb 6, 2016. 
  11. ^ "Welcome to the New Washingtonmonthly.com". Washington Monthly. April 2011. Retrieved 2011-11-04. 
  12. ^ "Welcome". Washington Monthly. September 2009. Retrieved 2011-11-04. 
  13. ^ Washington Monthly's Annual College Guide
  14. ^ Washington Monthly College Rankings
  15. ^ Washington Monthly's Annual College Guide, a note on methodology
  16. ^ Mok, Harry (August 24, 2015). "UC dominates Washington Monthly's college rankings". University of California. Retrieved 7 December 2015. 
  17. ^ "Strategic Media Partners: Washington Monthly Corporation". Lumina Foundation. 2014. Retrieved Feb 6, 2016. 
  18. ^ Hagey, Keach (July 1, 2011). "Liberal journalism's fickle godfather". Politico. Retrieved 7 December 2015. 
  19. ^ "Grants Database: Washington Monthly Corporation". Carnegie Corporation of New York. 2016. Retrieved Feb 6, 2016. 

External links[edit]