The Riverdale Press' Kate Pastor is reporting that a judge's initial report says that 33rd Senate District candidate Gustavo Rivera, who is being vigorously challenged by incumbent Pedro Espada, Jr.'s lawyers, has enough valid signatures to make the ballot.
In other news, fellow Espada challenger Dan Padernacht (who's got a new sign and bunting outside of his Sedgwick Ave. campaign office) says he will be meeting with Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz, Jr. next week. On Monday, Diaz met with Rivera. While he wouldn't commit to supporting Rivera then, he did say he's decidedly against the re-election of Espada.
Update: I wrongly stated above that a “judge” had settled the petition case. It was actually a “special referee” appointed by the Bronx Supreme Court. Also, Rivera's campaign released a statement last night slamming what they considered Espada's “frivolous” challenge of his petition signatures.
“Instead of fighting for our community, Pedro Espada tried to intimidate his own constituents and take away our right to vote for change,” said Rivera in the press release. “But the Bronx is still a democracy and our community will have a chance to elect new leadership on September 14th.”
We're waiting on word from Espada's camp.