Mike Cibik, leader of the 5th Republican Ward, just put out an e-mail announcing that John Featherman, one of his committeemen, has filed paperwork with the state to enter the GOP primary election for mayor next year.  From Cibik's e-mail, it sounds like Featherman will be running as much against the current Republican leadership in the city as he will the Democratic Party.

"A sizable portion of his political platform will be to reform the stagnant and ineffective Republican city committee, along with energizing, expanding, and developing a new Republican base here in Philadelphia so we finally have a viable two-party system in the City of Brotherly Love," Cibik wrote. "Furthermore, he will be vigorously challenging Mayor Nutter on his failed financial and economic policies, and the political patronage and corruption in City Hall."

Featherman ran as a Republican for Clerk of Quarter Sessions in 2007, losing to incumbent Vivian Miller, a Democrat who recently retired amid talk of folding her office into other city agencies.  Featherman also twice challenged former U.S. Sen. Rick Santorum, losing as the Libertarian Party candidate in 2000 and withdrawing as a Republican primary election challenger in 2006 after Santorum challenged his nominating petitions.  Featherman also lost a bid for the U.S. House in 1998 on the Libertarian ticket.

A Center City real estate agent, Featherman has been known to take shots at Nutter and other community leaders in letters to the editors of the Daily News and the Inquirer.  He also sometimes serves as media critic, as in July 2007 when he complained that the Daily News demeaned then-GOP mayoral candidate Al Taubenberger by calling him "little more than a place-holder, a formality for [Democrat Michael] Nutter to pass by."