None of the five contenders to be Prime Minister backed 5% pay rises for public sector workers.

In the second television debate for the Tory leadership contest, they were asked if a 5% pay rise for public sector workers was fair.

None of them said yes, instead passed it to pay review bodies and questioned whether it was affordable.

Penny Mordaunt, said: “This is not the place” and added there were “other things we can do as well as pay.”

Tom Tugendhat said the pay review bodies  give independent advice and added: “The government has a role in easing tax.”

Kemi Badenoch said it’s been a “difficult time” for public sector pay. She added: “The economy has not been able to sustain it.”

Liz Truss was most hard-line. She said: “It’s important the government sticks to our guns. We can’t have a wage price spiral. We have to be firm.”

Rishi Sunak said they all agreed on this issue.

He added: “We have a process with different pay review bodies.”

Sunak was asked to defend his family’s tax status and their wealth.

His wife’s father is a billionaire, owning a large software firm in India.

He said his wife, Akshata Murthy, resolved her nom-dom status earlier this year.

He said he was “incredibly proud” of what his father-in-law built and wanted to create conditions for people to that “here at home.”

All five said no to calling a General Election if they win.

Labour has called for an election, whoever wins, to give the people the choice on who should be Prime Minister.

Mordaunt and Tugendhat said they had a manifesto to deliver.

Badenoch said the country needed stability.  Truss said 100% effort was needed on delivering for Britain.

Sunak said the focus had to be on the economy.

None of the five said they would have Boris Johnson in a government if he was willing to serve.

Four of the five said they wouldn’t sit down with Russian President, Vladimir Putin, at the G20 summit.

Only Liz Truss said yes. She said she would “call him out” in front of others whose support in opposing Russia is needed.

Sunak, the former chancellor, went into the debate with he most support from MPs.

He was followed in second place by Mordaunt and Truss in third.

Badenoch and Tugendhat were in fourth and fifth, respectively.

Conservative MPs will vote again in the next round on Monday afternoon, where another candidate will be eliminated.

Further votes are planned for Tuesday and Wednesday to take the contest  down to the last two to be put to the party’s members for the final decision on who their next leader is.  The winner and the person who will be the next Prime Minister will be announced early in September.