Did Barack or didn't Barack?

Barack Obama Monday said he told the Teamsters while seeking their endorsement that he would consider ending federal oversight of the union - but insisted he made no commitments.

"What I've said is that I would examine what is going on in terms of the federal oversight that's been taking place ... it's been in place for many years, the union has done a terrific job cleaning house, and the question is whether they're going to be able to get treated just like every other union," Obama told ABC.

"Whether that time has come," he added, "that's something that I'll absolutely examine when I'm President."

The Wall Street Journal, however, reported Monday that Obama had told the Teamsters he supported ending the oversight - a top priority of union boss James Hoffa.

The labor group has been closely monitored by a federal panel for more than a decade - an effort to eliminate the influence of organized crime in the union.

Hillary Clinton's team accused Obama of changing his story.

"What I find troubling is a statement in a newspaper and then a candidate going on television and saying something different," said Clinton spokesman Howard Wolfson. Jen Psaki, an aide to Obama, insisted his position has been "entirely consistent" and that he believes the federal oversight has "run its course," though the Justice Department should make the final determination.

The Journal reported that Clinton had made no promises on the matter. But she did tell union chiefs they have "done a tremendous job."


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