Matthew McConaughey has always been a celebrity known for his relaxed and slightly holier-than-thou demeanor, which makes his current flirtation with politics a surprise for some, but a given for others. Hailing from the state of Texas, it’s no stranger that McConaughey might be prone to the more conservative side of things. At a time when expressing your political opinions in Hollywood can be more divisive than ever, it’s not really surprising that McConaughey’s outlier political sentiments have made waves. Whether these actions are simply McConaughey venting his own personal feelings or a signifier that he is about to become the next Donald Trump remains to be seen. Facts Verse will be right there watching on the front lines to see just how this whole episode goes down. Here’s at look at how and why Matthew McConaughey is getting into politics!
The true nature of Matthew McConaughey’s personal involvement in politics came about only a few months ago, when it was shared that the actor was toying with a possible interest in running for the governor of Texas, his home state. On a syndicated talk radio show, the actor seemed to mince words a little bit when the topic was brought up, with the general idea being that if he thought people would vote for him, he would consider running. The 51 year old actor was born and raised in the southern state, eventually relocating to Los Angeles to focus on his incredibly successful acting career. Some of his early roles were given to him by fellow Texan Richard Linklater, a filmmaker who notoriously has connections with political provocateur and Texan celebrity Alex Jones.
McConaughey came into the Hollywood scene as a charming personality in romantic comedies such as How to Lose a Guy In 10 Days, but has more recently found increased critical- and even cult- success in films such as Dallas Buyers Club and hit television runs such as the renowned first season of HBO’s True Detective. While his early roles saw him as a dopey pretty boy, his later roles have often had him take the role of a wise and humble loner, something which could very easily translate into a convincing political run if given the right PR team.
McConaughey has stated that his entering into politics “…wouldn’t be up to [him]. It would be up to the people…” However, he went on to express his general dismay with the current state of politics, particularly in Hollywood, where he sees what he believes to be a bias against conservative politics in favor of more liberal collective beliefs. According to him, his interest in politics would only come about “… when politics redefine it’s purpose”. While some may see this has him stating that he’s not interested, it could be more accurately interpreted as him saying that he’s especially interested, and interested particularly in changing things with his public power.
McConaughey went on to express some vague philosophical thoughts about his own political beliefs, saying he stands behind “personal values [that will] rebind our social contracts with each other as Americans”. While there isn’t much to take from this, one can infer from his stance on “personal values”, as well as his general anti-liberal rhetoric, that he’s skewing more towards libertarianism than either traditional conservative or liberal politics. However, these ideas are pretty universal and could translate just as easily to a conservative run. It was largely “personal values” that Donald Trump was pandering to with his “Make America Great Again” campaign, and Trump certainly didn’t incorporate much libertarianism into what many consider a somewhat fascistic term in office.
Despite his flirting with political philosophy, it’s still largely unsure just how close McConaughey could be to throwing in his Hollywood towel and stepping into the ring of politics. Donald Trump had been talking about a political run for decades before he eventually made the move, and it was still an incredible surprise to many people who considered him (and perhaps still do) more talk than action. Still, Donald Trump set a precedent that we should never take these early signs with a grain of salt, as you never know who is going to pop out of the woodwork and become the next celebrity to take over the world of national politics. If Donald Trump could do it, Matthew McConaughey could likely do it a whole lot better, with a much calmer demeanor. McConaughey went on to say that he “still question[s] how much you can really get done in politics, and [he doesn’t] know if politics is [the] avenue to… [do what he is] best equipped to get done”. From this, one can infer that Mcconaughey, at least for the moment, feels most comfortable with simply espousing wisdom from his unique Hollywood vantage point. Still, the interest is there, and he’s thinking about it.
There is no shortage of Hollywood celebrities who have made the jump from Hollywood to politics. Ironically, despite there seeming to be a general liberal sentiment when it comes to Hollywood politics, nearly all of the members of this club are Republicans. They include Ronald Reagan and Donald Trump, who both made it all the way to the White House (to much chagrin), as well as Arnold Schwarzenegger, who became the governor of California, Clint Eastwood, who became the mayor of his town of Carmel-by-the-Sea, California, and even wrestler Jesse Ventura, a wild and crazy provocateur in his own right and former Minnesota governor. If you’re enjoying this look at Hollywood politics, hit the like button to support more content. As well, hit the subscribe button to be notified when that new content is ready for you to watch!
McConaughey has gone on to speak up a little bit more about what he perceives as being a political bias in Hollywood and the media, especially after the divisive 2020 election cycle. On tour to promote his book, which has little to do with politics on the surface, McConaughey has wasted no opportunity to showcase the political differences between himself and his general Hollywood peers. He has termed himself “aggressively centrist”, as compared to the majority of Hollywood and their “far left” philosophies. While he may be open to accepting their political differences, he himself feels that there is a trend in Hollywood to bully anyone who doesn’t share these “far left” beliefs, whether they are the general public or a fellow celebrity. As an “aggressive centrist”, McConaughey certainly seems to feel like he is being persecuted by the pervading trends around him, going on record as saying “[the Hollywood] left… absolutely condescend, patronize, and are arrogant towards that other 50 percent”, with that other 50 percent, of course, being non-liberals and Republicans. He feels this represents a negative attitude towards “ordinary working people” who voted for Trump.
While what McConaughey is saying might scare some people, especially in the current political climate, he is adamant that what he wants to work towards is a reversal of our current divisive ways. He feels that this attitude from the “far left” in Hollywood and other places is preventing the opposing sides of the political spectrum from finding any common ground. From McConaughey’s perspective, half of the country voted for Trump, and this half of the country shouldn’t be completely written off by the Hollywood and media systems. Many democrats were in denial that Trump won the election in 2016, similar to many republicans being in denial that Joe Biden won this most recent one.
McConaughey also had some confusing sentiments to share about the general trend of labeling the media as “fake news”, saying that the media themselves have been “fed fakes news” about the political sphere, which has caused them to propagate even more fake news unintentionally. While it’s all a little hard to sort out exactly how McConaughey feels “fake news’ is, the buzzwords are there, and those buzzwords seem to put him more on the side of Trump and his voters than Biden and his. Still, McConaughey is adamant that what he wants to do in politics, whether from his comfy Hollywood chair or from a more official seat, is to bridge the gap between the competing radical sides of the political spectrum. By coming out about his somewhat conservative beliefs, McConaughey seems to simply want to cool the air about being a Republican in Hollywood, and being a Republican in America. Surely, there seems to be an admirable goal somewhere in there, but there’s always a chance that it will turn into something more sinister in the long-run, especially if these innocent musings turn into an actual political run for office.
At the moment, the consensus seems to be that McConaughey is simply voicing his frustrations with the general feelings of divisiveness in Hollywood politics. He feels that the rhetoric being shared by the left in Hollywood is too condemning of the right. He feels this can be alienating not only to the general public who might be consuming this media, but to conservatives in the Hollywood sphere, as well. Notably, he has accused liberals of being “patronizing” of Trump and his supporters, but hasn’t said anything about the fact that Trump and his supporters can be fairly patronizing of the left and their supporters, whether in Hollywood or the general public. If McConaughey’s interests truly are “centrist”, it may seem strange to some that he seems to be fixated only on the left and their bullying of the right, when it really takes two to tango.
McConaughey made quite a few waves on the podcast of other Hollywood outlier Russell Brand. Brand has become similarly notorious for his provocative words in a somewhat “radical left” Hollywood system. This has caused much chagrin amongst his fellow Hollywood stars who see his antics as nothing more than stirring up trouble and pandering for attention. The remarks McConaughey made on the podcast certainly turned some heads, as he continued to decry the “far left” of Hollywood and their views on what he considered the average American- the Trump supporter. Some Twitter users even went so far as to accuse McConaughey of being nothing more than a “privileged white man”, joking that his iconic catchphrase “alright, alright, alright” should be retroactively changed to “alt-right, alt-right, alt-right”. Of course, being called “alt-right” in today’s Hollywood climate is never going to be great publicity, unless the people you’re looking to win over are Trump supporters.
Unsurprisingly, the problem the general public seems to be having with McConaughey’s statements is that they are as offensive to the left and he claims the left is being to the right. Perhaps, then, McConaughey needs to find a better way to bring these two competing parts of the political spectrum together. Whether or not he’s going to find this better way by increasing his own political power remains to be seen.
At the end of the day, many people will likely agree that the current political system has some issues, but it’s doubtful whether or not Matthew McConaughey is the answer. If we left out a point you feel we should’ve brought up regarding the actor’s recent political statements, or if you’ve got an interesting counterpoint, let us know in the comments down below! As well, be sure to the like the video, subscribe to the channel, and hit that notification bell to always know when our next video drops!