Here at the Monthly we host an annual fundraising drive. It’s back, and in this season of giving, your tax-deductible donation can make a big difference.

If you’re a regular reader of the College Guide, Steve Benen’s Political Animal, or the print magazine, you know that the Washington Monthly offers the kind of cutting-edge reporting and analysis the country needs now more than ever, breaking big stories well ahead of major mainstream outlets.

But to keep us going strong, we need a little help. With that in mind, the Monthly published this appeal earlier today:

When Charles Peters launched the Washington Monthly in 1969, it was his notion to prod everyone to rethink liberal and conservative ideas, to look at our government, its leaders, and its institutions with fierce honesty — and to make them better. He did not foresee how influential his magazine would become, changing policy debates on more than one occasion. Nor could he have foreseen the seismic shifts that have roiled the economy—and the publishing world—more than forty years later. But even though other magazines, newspapers, and Web sites are cutting back their coverage or shutting their doors altogether, we’re still here in our cluttered little downtown DC office, still committed to providing—in print and on the Web—the cutting-edge reporting and analysis the country needs now more than ever.

And now more than ever we need your support. Like other nonprofits such as public television and radio, we depend on the generous support of our readers and other donors. We’ve never charged for access to our blogs, our online College Guide and feature stories, and we don’t intend to. Won’t you help keep our handful of plucky young writers and editors telling stories about what really matters in Washington?

Your tax-deductible donation will make possible more of these kinds of stories, both in the magazine and on the Web. Any amount is welcome. But as you consider your donation, please think about what our society would be missing without stories like ours that keep a close watch on our government and its elected officials, and what your day would be like without your daily dose of Steve Benen’s running commentary on “Political Animal.”

So give generously — $25, $50, $100 — and if you donate $150 or more, we’ll send you a hardcover copy of Monthly founder Charles Peters’ latest book, Lyndon B. Johnson, individually signed by the author. It’s the latest in “The American Presidents” series. The New Yorker says it is “illuminating” and “a resonant portrait of a man of prodigious political abilities, who was driven, but ultimately undone, by his temperamental flaws.”

While the magazine has print and online advertisements, these only cover part of our overall expenses; we depend on contributions from readers to keep operating.

Click here to help out. You can donate online, through PayPal, or through the mail.

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Daniel Luzer is the news editor at Governing Magazine and former web editor of the Washington Monthly. Find him on Twitter: @Daniel_Luzer