Nov 29, 2021 - Politics & Policy

Matthew McConaughey says he won't run for Texas governor

Matthew McConaughey speaks onstage during HISTORYTalks Leadership & Legacy presented by HISTORY at Carnegie Hall on February 29, 2020 in New York City.

Actor Matthew McConaughey at a 2020 New York City Event. Photo: Noam Galai/Getty Images for HISTORY)

Actor Matthew McConaughey announced Sunday he has no immediate plans to enter politics, closing the door on a potential bid for governor of Texas in 2022.

What they’re saying: "As a simple kid born in the little town of Uvale, Texas, it never occurred to me that one day I would be considered for political leadership. It’s a humbling and inspiring path to ponder," the Oscar-winning actor said in a video posted to Twitter.

  • "It is also a path that I am choosing not to take at this moment," McConaughey continued.
  • McConaughey said he instead plans to "continue to work and invest the bounty I have by supporting entrepreneurs, businesses and foundations that I believe … are creating pathways for people to succeed in life."

Flashback: McConaughey, who has no stated party affiliation and no previous government experience, said in September he was "measuring" the idea of a run for Texas governor amid encouragement, calling himself "more of a folksy and philosopher poet statesman than I am a, per se, definitive politician."

What's next: Republican Gov. Greg Abbott is seeking a third term, with former Rep. Beto O’Rourke, who garnered national attention in bids for U.S. Senate and president, emerging as the most prominent Democrat running to unseat him.

  • A UT Tyler poll released this month showed McConaughey besting O’Rourke and Abbott in separate head-to-head matchups, but finishing second to Abbott in a three-way race.
  • The poll also had Abbott leading O'Rourke by 6 points in a traditional Democrat vs. Republican general election.

Editor's note: This article has been updated with further information on the Texas governor's race, including details of the UT Tyler poll.

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