A new poll has actor Matthew McConaughey leading the field of potential candidates for Texas governor.
After months of speculation about whether he might run, there is now evidence that the actor could be a viable candidate if he chooses to get into the race. A new poll by The Dallas Morning News and the University of Texas at Tyler (UT Tyler) that was released Sunday shows that McConaughey has a 12-point lead over incumbent Republican Gov. Greg Abbott.
Abbott is running for this third term as Texas governor. McConaughey previously said that running for office is something he is seriously thinking about, calling it, “a true consideration.”
The Dallas Morning News reports that former Democratic Texas Congressman and failed presidential and senate candidate Beto O’Rourke has already said that he will not run for governor.
The poll results, and what it means:
McConaughey’s possible candidacy draws support from both Republicans and Democrats, giving him a double-digit lead over incumbent Abbott in a hypothetical match-up (45 percent to 33 percent). The numbers, however, don’t indicate a sure thing when broken down by party affiliation. Although McConaughey’s broad bipartisan appeal would come in useful during a general election, he would have to win a primary first.
McConaughey’s support is strongest among Democrats, who may see him as a way of possibly turning the governor’s office from red to blue.
66 percent of those who identify as Democrats said they would support McConaughey for governor. However, 51 percent of Democrats also said they want a progressive candidate, whereas only 25 percent want a centrist.
McConaughey has painted himself as a centrist in recent interviews, and he has criticized both parties. The Oscar-winning star has not revealed who he voted for in the 2020 presidential election.
McConaughey likewise leads among independent or unaffiliated voters, with 44 percent of them saying they would support McConaughey, compared to 28 percent support for Abbott.
Among those who identify as Republicans, though, McConaughey only received 30 percent support, compared to 56 percent who would stick with Abbott.
Some other poll results:
Abbott leads among Texans over age 45; McConaughey does better among younger voters.
Among those who said that Abbott did not perform well during the blackout during the February snowstorm, McConaughey has a commanding lead of 59 percent to just 9 percent for Abbott.
The poll was conducted April 6 to April 13 with a sample size of 1,126 registered voters. The poll included a mix of phone and online surveys conducted in English and Spanish, and it was weighted for factors including gender, age, race/ ethnicity, and education. The margin of error is plus-or-minus 2.9 percent.
The next Texas gubernatorial election is in November 2022.
McConaughey has 72 acting credits on IMDB, including: Dazed and Confused, Contact, U-571, How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days, Sahara, Failure to Launch, The Lincoln Lawyer, Dallas Buyers Club, The Wolf of Wall Street, and Interstellar.
UNDERRATED MOVIE RECOMMENDATION: U-571 tells the story (inspired by real events) of a daring mission during WWII to recover an enigma code machine from a German U-Boat submarine.