Happy Monday! Former Vice President Joe Biden is leading in all the polls for the Democratic presidential nomination but his rivals are planning for that lead to fizzle as time wears on. The other contenders seeking the nomination have all written into their campaign plans the opportunity of “when Biden fails.” “It’s a deceptive lead, because it really doesn’t get tested until we get down to a narrower race in which, at some stage, people are going to have to say, ‘Is he our guy or not,” says one Democratic pollster. [Politico]

Topping the news: The Tribune’s Peggy Fletcher Stack went to Russia this summer to look into how the country treats religions other than its officially sanctioned Russian Orthadox Church. Members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints face increasing pressure. Here’s the first of a three part series. [Trib]

-> The Utah Legislature is considering a $1.5 million payout to former Utah Attorney General John Swallow, who was acquitted of corruption charges in 2017. [Trib]

-> Sen. Mike Lee, R-Utah reportedly had a conversation with a top official in Moscow regarding loosening sanctions against Russia. [Trib]

Trib Talk: On this week’s episode of the “Trib Talk” podcast, Tribune reporters Benjamin Wood and Jessica Miller interview David Hawkins, a Utah man who this week was deemed factually innocent by the state after being convicted of child sexual abuse more than a decade ago.

Tweets of the Day: From @chicagotribune: ‘Former South Carolina Gov. Mark Sanford said he is challenging Donald Trump in the 2020 primary because ‘I think we need to have a conversation on what it means to be a Republican.’"

-> From @AnandWrites: “On @Forbes’s list of America’s 100 ‘Most Innovative Leaders,’ there are twice as many men named Stanley as there are women of any name. And there are only two Stanleys. That’s right: 99 of America’s 100 most innovative leaders are men, @Forbes says.”

-> From @conorsen: “People say the economy is operating below capacity, but America’s out of Popeye’s chicken sandwiches and White Claw.”

Happy birthday: To former Salt Lake City Mayor Rocky Anderson.

Also in the news: In Salt Lake County, demand for dog parks is “skyrocketing.” The public is encouraged to provide input on site plans for three new parks. [Trib]

-> Large commercial buildings in Salt Lake City are required to report their energy use as part of a new rule in place to combat air pollution. But compliance is off to a slow start. [Tirb]

-> A district judge has ruled that Draper City officials were correct to remove Hubert Huh from the November ballot after he missed a filing deadline. [Trib]

-> Kristen Cox, Utah state budget chief, is set on promoting management theory. Critics of her strategies say she may be leveraging for personal gain. [Trib]

-> Pat Bagley illustrates who’s really maintaining Utah’s economic engine. [Trib]

Nationally: President Donald Trump abruptly called off peace talks among the Taliban and Afghan leaders, leaving a spotlight shining on divisions within the administration. [NYTimes] [WaPost]

-> Sen. Kamala Harris apologized for the way she responded to a remark about Trump when an audience member called him “mentally retarded.” [NYTimes]

-> President Trump is heading to Baltimore, the same city he called “a rat and rodent infested mess,” on Thursday to speak at the 2019 House Republican Conference. [CNN]

-> Democrats in the House Judiciary Committee are planning a vote to formalize impeachment investigation procedures should they go down that path. [NYTimes]

-> As lawmakers are left without a clear sign of where President Trump stands on gun control, the pressure is on for the president to get a plan together. [CNN] [Politico]

Got a tip? A birthday, wedding or anniversary to announce? Email us at cornflakes@sltrib.com. If you haven’t already, sign up here for our weekday email to get this sent directly to your inbox.

- Thomas Burr and Clara Hatcher