PORTLAND – City Councilor Cheryl Leeman cruised to a 10th term in office Tuesday.

Leeman, a Republican who has served District 4 for nearly 27 years, easily defeated challenger Ezekial Callanan to win another three-year term. Complete but unofficial returns showed Leeman with 2,771 votes, or 71 percent, to 1,124, or 29 percent, for Callanan.

“I’m just overwhelmed by the support,” Leeman said. “It’s a very big win.”

The race marked one of the few times that Leeman has faced opposition in her long career on the Portland City Council. She was unopposed in 2008.

Leeman, an aide to Sen. Olympia Snowe, R-Maine, had touted her years of helping constituents and her insider’s knowledge of how the city works. She argued that’s particularly important with a new city manager, Mark Rees, on the job, and with Portland having a popularly elected mayor for the first time in 88 years.

She said property taxes were the biggest issue for voters.

Callanan, who had headed up the Heart of Biddeford development organization and is currently looking for a job, had argued that new energy and a fresh way of looking at things could lead to solutions for some the district’s issues.

He said hyper-local issues were paramount, from cars going too fast on some streets to parents concerned about a safe walking route for children to get to school.

Staff Writer Ed Murphy can be contacted at 791-6465 or at: [email protected]