Here are excerpts from the final campaign speeches of the leading candidates from Germany's main parties ahead of a federal election on Sunday:


The year 2009 is a special year because we are faced with a special challenge -- the financial crisis ... My aim is to make sure that banks should never again be in a position to blackmail governments.

Bankers believed that they didn't need rules. This was the greatest delusion of the past decades.

We're on the side of workers. We don't want to raise taxes like the SPD does but we want to ensure that those who are working hard don't see the their pay raises taken back by the state.

Tomorrow, what's important is to give the CDU the strength to form a government with a new constellation, one in which we are strong because we're the only party that truly represents the middle in our society. Stability can only come from a strong CDU/CSU together with the FDP.


Who would have thought just a few weeks ago that the race would be wide open again? But everything is wide open and anyone capable of catching up can also move into the lead. We're back.

The conservatives are getting increasingly nervous. They're thinking about the opinion polls and how the lead they had is melting like ice cream in the sun.

A center-right coalition like Frau Merkel wants will take us backwards to the 1990s -- with a few people at the top getting tax cuts but the vast majority of us getting squeezed. Help us to make sure that doesn't happen.

We're not immune to mistakes. But what sets the SPD apart from the others is that we never lose our bearings at times of crisis. Without the SPD having a share of government these past four years, Germany would look a lot different than it does now.

Those who don't want to see this country torn apart into winners and losers must go and vote tomorrow. Those who want to prevent a center-right coalition must get up off the sofa and go to the polling station and vote SPD.

FREE DEMOCRAT (FDP) GUIDO WESTERWELLE IN COLOGNE: If you vote for the conservatives you might end up stuck with a grand coalition again. A lot of conservatives have grown complacent in the grand coalition. If you vote for the FDP, you'll get a government in the center, a government that knows how economic responsibility and social fairness fit together.


I know we can stop CDU/CSU-FDP tomorrow and I hope we'll be the third strongest party in parliament. We're at a crossroads. Either we'll have a government that does everything for the bankers and corporate executives or a government that's going to focus on the ecological and social modernization of our country that will create new jobs and decent education for everyone.


Elected leaders cannot allow themselves to be subjected to the power of the financial industry. Money rules the world. The only political party that stands up to that is the Left. And that's why the Left has to be strong on election day.
(Reporting by Sarah Marsh and Alexandra Hudson; writing by Erik Kirschbaum)