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Photos: Rick Kern/Getty Images; Lynda M. Gonzalez-Pool/Getty Images.

Actor Matthew McConaughey has a 12-point lead over Texas Gov. Greg Abbott in a hypothetical matchup for the governorship, according to a Dallas Morning News and University of Texas at Tyler poll.

Why it matters: The numbers bode well for the Oscar winner's viability, as he already has strong name recognition in his home state. The "Interstellar" star has been flirting with a gubernatorial run as he toured to promote his new book, "Greenlights."

By the numbers: 45% said they would be more likely to vote for McConaughey than Abbott, while 33% said they would vote for the incumbent governor. 22% of all those polled said they'd vote for another candidate.

  • 56% of Republicans preferred Abbott 56%, versus 30% for McConaughey. 66% Democrats favored McConaughey, versus 8% for Abbott.

Between the lines: "McConaughey has previously criticized both parties and has come across as more of a moderate who condemns the entire political system as the problem rather than any one party," writes Fox News.

Methodology: The poll was conducted April 6-13 among 1,126 registered voters. The margin of error is 2.92%.

Go deeper

America's pandemic coin crunch returns

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

An early pandemic problem that plagued businesses is back: not enough change to go around.

Why it matters: The pandemic broke America's coin flow. It has repercussions for millions that rely on it for daily transactions.

2 hours ago - World

Explosions in Tel Aviv and Gaza as Israeli-Palestinian crisis escalates

Israel's Iron Dome aerial defense system intercepts a rocket fired from Gaza over southern Israel. Photo: Menahem Kahana/AFP via Getty

Tel Aviv — The Hamas and Islamic Jihad militant groups fired dozens of rockets from the Gaza Strip toward Tel Aviv and other cities in central Israel on Tuesday night, a new step in the current conflict that is likely to be followed by increased Israeli air strikes in Gaza.

Why it matters: The current crisis began in Jerusalem but has evolved into a military conflict across Israel and Gaza that remains on a path of escalation.