Matthew McConaughey, 52, announced Sunday night that he will not run for governor of Texas, ahead of a Dec. 13 deadline to file for the Republican or Democratic primary or to declare as an independent candidate.
After years of considering political office in the Lone Star state, the actor had decided against it, he said in a three-minute speech.
“As a simple kid born in the little town of Uvalde, Texas, it never occurred to me that I would one day be considered for political leadership,” McConaughey said. “It’s a humbling and inspiring path to ponder. It is also a path that I am choosing not to take at this moment.”
McConaughey — who had not even announced a party affiliation — was outperforming both Republican Gov. Greg Abbot and Democratic challenger Beto O’Rourke.
Flanked between the Stars and Stripes and the Texas State flag, McConaughey said he had beenof “how I can be most useful in this life going forward.”
“I’ve been listening, I’ve been learning, I’ve been measuring. I’ve been studying Texas politics and American politics,” the “Dallas Buyers Club” star said.
“What have I learned? A lot. That we have some problems we need to fix. That our politics need new purpose. That we have divides that need healing.”
Ultimately though, McConaughey said he would leave that work to “the leaders and the servants out there,” while working to help organizations that “have a mission to serve and build trust while also building prosperity.”
“What am I going to do? I’m going to continue to work and invest the bounty I have by supporting entrepreneurs, businesses and foundations that I believe are leaders,” he said.
About 40 percent of Texans — including 49 percent of Democrats — had told pollsters they wanted McConaughey to trade Hollywood for the Austin statehouse.
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