WASHINGTON (AP) _ The Teamsters election overseer set Oct. 19 as the date for a debate between candidates for the union's presidency.

Election Officer Michael Cherkasky said Monday the event will be held at an American University auditorium in Washington.

Details of the debate format have to be worked out, and the three candidates, James P. Hoffa, Tom Leedham and John Metz, have not yet formally committed to participating.

Cherkasky said he would require that a transcript of the debate be posted on the union's web site, at all local union halls, and at Teamsters work places.

``The members deserve to be informed voters,'' Cherkasky said. ``The debate will provide a forum for the candidates to inform the 1.4 million Teamsters of their positions on the issues.''

The results of the 1996 Teamsters election, which had been funded with nearly $18 million in federal money, were overturned after investigators uncovered an illegal fund-raising scheme that benefited the re-election of union president Ron Carey. Carey was barred from the rerun.