Just got offered a speaking gig down at UCLA for the day after Super Tuesday next March, alongside one of my favorite number-crunchers, Sean Trende. Should be fun.

Here are some more immediate midday news/views treats:

* WaPo’s Jonelle Marte explains the “file-and-suspend” strategy for maximizing high-earning couple’s Social Security benefits that was eliminated in the recent budget deal.

* More Pew data on religion showing pretty serious trend towards non-affiliation with religious institutions among Millennials.

* New PPP poll shows HRC lead in Iowa ballooning; here’s one amazing number: she’s up among seniors 74/13.

* At TNR Suzy Khimm discusses the pros and cons of Bernie Sanders going negative on HRC, as some are encouraging him to do.

* At the Plum Line, Paul Waldman suggests HRC may become the first Dem presidential candidate in many years to talk regularly about guns.

And in sorta non-political news:

* Speaker Paul Ryan trying to get smell of cigarette smoke out of his suite. Boehner lives on.

As we break for lunch, here’s Sonny Rhodes with “The Ballad of Serenity,” also known as the theme song from the sci-fi series Firefly.

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Ed Kilgore is a political columnist for New York and managing editor at the Democratic Strategist website. He was a contributing writer at the Washington Monthly from January 2012 until November 2015, and was the principal contributor to the Political Animal blog.