With heavy sighs and clenched handkerchiefs, politicians across NY state mourned the loss of former State Sen. Pedro Espada Jr., after Tuesday's humiliating defeat at the hands of upstart Gustavo Rivera. "He was an albatross around all of our necks," said a depressed Sen. Liz Krueger, clearly too overwhelmed by the moment. "What Espada's ethical problems did was put a scarlet letter around anyone in the conference," a Senate official told the Daily News, tears probably streaming down a reddened, blotchy face.

The pain of Espada's defeat was too much for the Albany Times Union, who eulogized the Bronxchester Senator in heroic terms with a piece today titled "Good Riddance, Mr. Espada." And Espada's conqueror Gustavo Rivera was described in fearsome tones, like villagers in awe of Grendel's killer: “He is a giant killer in the biggest victory I have seen in 40 years of politics,” said Councilman G. Oliver Koppell. “Gustavo is almost like the perfect anti-Espada because he’s so down to earth. He buys his suits at the Burlington Coat Factory. He rides the 4 train every day. He’s a really smart guy who works hard for his community and wants to see change,” said Dan Levitan, a spokesman for the Working Families Party. But can Rivera throw out the race card with the effortless charm and enthusiasm that Espada exuded?

Just like the man himself said in his concession speech, it's all about the vengeance love. But worry not, because the campaign-wunderkind is not giving up, not by a longshot. Espada has already made one political comeback in 2008. Can Espada break Lazarus's record, and rise from the dead twice?