TEXAS — He hasn’t announced a 2022 run for Texas governor or even party affiliation, but actor and Texas staple Matthew McConaughey is currently favored over Texas Gov. Greg Abbott, according to the results of a poll conducted by the Dallas Morning News and the University of Texas at Tyler.

What You Need To Know

  • Actor Matthew McConaughey leads Gov. Greg Abbott in a newly published poll conducted by the Dallas Morning News and University of Texas at Tyler

  • Despite not having announced a 2022 run for Texas governor and having no party affiliation, the polls puts McConaughey nine points ahead of Abbott

  • Abbott's approval rating has dropped in the wake of his ban on mask mandates and the passage of the nation's most restrictive abortion law 

  • Former Democratic congressman Beto O'Rourke, who hasn't announced a run either, is polling just five points behind Abbott

McConaughey leads Abbott, whose approval rating has dropped to 45%, by nine points.

Abbots has taken some heat in the wake of his executive orders banning mask and vaccine mandates, the recently passed abortion law that bans the procedure as soon as six weeks into pregnancy and the devastating February winter storm.

McConaughey has discussed a run on several occasions but has been silent on the issue recently.

A name that has been generating a great deal of buzz over the last week is former Texas Rep. Beto O’Rourke. Speculation that the Democrat will announce a bid for Texas governor by the end of 2021 has been rampant in the past few days.

The poll has O’Rourke gaining on Abbott at just five points behind him.

While he’s not a lock, Abbott is polling favorably against Republican primary challengers.

According to the Dallas Morning News, the poll was conducted Sept. 7-14, surveyed 1,148 registered voters and has a margin of error of 2.9 percentage points.