Six key takeaways from the ITV Conservative leadership debate

The Tory MPs competing to become the next prime minister went head-to-head in a fiery debate on Sunday.

Kemi Badenoch, Penny Mordaunt, Rishi Sunak, Liz Truss and Tom Tugendhat took questions from ITV host Julie Etchingham on issues dominating the campaign.

Here's everything you need to know about the clash:

Boris Johnson is very unlikely to get a cabinet role during the next premiership

The candidates were asked to raise their hands if, should they become prime minister, they'd ask Mr Johnson to serve in their cabinet. No hands went up.

Tom Tugendhat's lack of ministerial position was a double-edged sword

During a Channel 4 leadership debate just two days ago, Mr Tugendhat capitalised on his position as the only candidate who hadn't served under a tainted Boris Johnson. He received a round of applause from the studio audience after presenting himself as the sole candidate free to speak their mind.

However, on Sunday's debate, Ms Badenoch told him criticising his rival's ministerial records was "easy" when he'd never held such a position himself.

“We’ve been out there on the front line of government," she said.“I’ve been on the front line of Afghanistan and Iraq," Mr Tugendhat, a military veteran, retorted.

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None of the Tory leadership candidates openly supported a public sector pay increase above 5%

According to recent reports, Boris Johnson has suggested a 5% pay rise for public sector workers amid the cost of living crisis.

Ms Mordaunt, highlighted the role of pay review bodies and insisted the debate was "not the place" to make judgements about wages. Mr Tugendhat agreed.

Meanwhile, Ms Badenoch and Ms Truss said the current economy cannot withstand such pay increases.

Mr Sunak noted that all candidates were in "unity" about the 5% suggestion.

A snap election probably won't happen anytime soon

The contenders were also united in ruling out calling a general election to secure a mandate from the public if they became prime minister.

Ms Badenoch said: “We need to give people some stability, they are tired of all the upheaval.”

ITV News Political Reporter Shehab Khan gauges how Conservative members reacted to the leadership debate 

Mr Sunak appeared to be the candidate to beat

Each candidate was given the opportunity to play host and direct a question towards a rival of their choice.

Mr Tugendhat grilled Ms Mordaunt, but Ms Mordaunt, Ms Truss and Ms Badenoch all picked the former chancellor.

"Is it a compliment to Rishi Sunak that so many questions are to him?" ITV News Deputy Political Editor Anushka Asthana tweeted.

"Everyone is laying into Sunak. Which shows he is the candidate to beat," Political Editor Robert Peston wrote.

Mr Sunak questioned his rival's Conservative credentials

Mr Sunak pre-empted said attacks, choosing to accuse rivals of left-wing thinking early in the debate.

"Something-for-nothing economics isn't conservative, it's socialism," he told Ms Truss when she said she wanted to cut taxes and borrow more.

He also said Ms Mordaunt's economic vision was reckless in a way "even Jeremy Corbyn" wasn't.