Poll Shows Matthew McConaughey Beating Texas Gov. Greg Abbott If They Ran Against Each Other
Alright, alright, alright.
If Matthew McConaughey ever decides winning an Oscar and an Emmy just wasn’t enough for him when it comes to accomplishments, he could likely just become governor of the one state that was for a time a sovereign nation.
He keeps getting older but the minimum voting age stays the same. https://t.co/oWsHhqqD6N
— Philip Bump (@pbump) April 18, 2021
That’s one takeaway from a surprising poll showing that in a race for governor of Texas, the actor would pretty much flatten the competition, including current Republican governor Greg Abbott.
If he were to take the plunge and run for governor, the poll found, 45% of Texas registered voters would vote for McConaughey, 33% would vote for Abbott and 22% would vote for someone else.
McConaughey’s double-digit lead over the two-term Republican incumbent is significant. The poll, conducted April 6-13, surveyed 1,126 registered voters and has a margin of sampling error of plus or minus 2.92 percentage points.
The poll was conducted by the Morning News and the University of Texas at Tyler. Like another surprising celeb, Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson, McConaughey hasn’t rejected the idea of running for office at all. As the paper notes, the actor “has teased political pundits and TV talk show hosts with musings that he might enter politics in his home state.”
Neither Johnson nor McConaughey have been explicit regarding their personal party affiliations, but a closer look at the results for the latter clearly indicates which side of the political spectrum might help him take office should he choose to run one day. No matter how he votes when he steps in the booth, it’s clear that people who lean left would be open to a Governor McConaughey.
The poll determined that 56% of Republican voters would still back the state’s current governor. Only 30% would support McConaughey. At least 66% of Democrat-voting respondents would vote McConaughey — and 44% of Independents would support the actor’s gubernatorial ambitions.
Following the controversial presidency of a former reality TV star, however, the idea of Matthew McConaughey in higher office was greeted with skepticism on social media.
Matthew McConaughey is thinking of running for Governor! Finally, a rich, middle aged white guy, with no history of holding public office is going to save a state with deep and historic racial and social justice problems.
— Joshua Gale (@joshuagale75) April 18, 2021
Matthew McConaughey may be a viable candidate for Texas governor; poll shows actor ahead of Abbott
— David Jolly (@DavidJollyFL) April 18, 2021
A dead potted plant would be better than Greg Abbott, but I'm hoping Beto will run instead of McConaughey. Famous people shouldn't run for office just because they're famous & Texas needs real leadership more than ever rn @BetoORourke #RunBetoRun https://t.co/U5rG0p6mf2
— T👻r👻 D🐈⬛bl💀n 🎃🧙🏻♀️ (@taradublinrocks) April 18, 2021
Even if they might agree with McConaughey’s politics, some on the left were concerned by the poll, namely because they think former congressman and presidential aspirant Beto O’Rourke is a better choice.
You know who's very qualified loves Texas and Texans and will make a great Governor of Texas? Beto O'Rourke
Not Greg Abbott or Mathew McConaughey #DemVoice1
— Henry Djoutsa (@D_jeneration) April 18, 2021
Beto O'Rourke should be the next Governor of Texas, not Matthew McConaughey.
Keep it simple, y'all.
— BrooklynDad_Defiant! (@mmpadellan) April 18, 2021
I love Matthew McConaughey but…
BETO IS THE MAN! https://t.co/35G0zQzaX7
— Ali (@Alichatcat) April 19, 2021
McConaughey hasn’t responded directly to this poll but he’s doing things you might expect from, well, a political candidate, or at least a pundit. Like interviewing Dr. Anthony Fauci.
— NBC Entertainment (@nbc) April 19, 2021
Ultimately actors like Matthew McConaughey and Dwayne Johnson face a choice between maintaining a fairly broad base of fans with all manner of political affiliations and essentially choosing sides.
For famous people pulling in a ton of money, possibly alienating a huge chunk of fandom is not an easy choice to make.