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Matthew McConaughey says he might consider running for governor of Texas

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Actor Matthew McConaughey hinted that he might consider running for governor of his home state of Texas in the future.

In a Tuesday interview on “The Hugh Hewitt Show” when asked if he would ever run for governor, the 51-year-old Academy Award-winning actor said, “I don’t know. I mean, that wouldn’t be up to me. It would be up to the people more than it would me.”

He was on the podcast promoting his new book called “Greenlights.”

“I want to get behind personal values to rebind our social contracts with each other as Americans, as people again,” he said, adding that the country doesn’t “trust each other.”

Matthew MCConaughey

“Look, politics seems to be a broken business to me right now,” McConaughey added. “And when politics redefines its purpose, I could be a hell of a lot more interested.”

In further explaining how he feels about the current state of politics, the actor delved into getting behind “personal values.”

“I want to get behind personal values to rebind our social contracts with each other as Americans, as people again,” he said, adding that the country doesn’t “trust each other.”

“We don’t trust each other, and that leads to us not trust in ourselves, which if that becomes epidemic, then we’ve got anarchy,” the “True Detective” actor continued. “I’m all for the individual, and I think it’s for — to make collective change that the individual needs to look in the mirror and say, ‘How can I be a little bit better today?'”

After that, McConaughey emphasized that “Coming out of the election right now, we’ve got to stabilize. This country’s got to stabilize first before we start to say, OK, here’s how we’re marching out of this together, forward.”

The current governor of the Lone Star State, Greg Abbott (R), faces a re-election contest in 2022. Texas places no term limits on its governors.

If McConaughey runs for governor and actually wins, this wouldn’t be the first time that a Hollywood actor became a governor of a U.S. state. Ronald Reagan was elected governor of California in 1966 and served two full terms before being elected president in 1980. Though former professional wrestler Jesse Ventura isn’t an actor per se, it should be noted that he served a full term as governor of Minnesota in the late 1990s and early 2000s.

While the actor has never publicly endorsed President Donald Trump or any other candidate for president, he has been openly critical of the country’s left wing when it comes to the controversial president. McConaughey said in 2016 after Trump was elected that “A lot of people that I know on the far left were in denial after he had become the president.”

“I remember saying, well look, regardless of [Trump’s] politics, in the very first question, what do we say in America is successful? What do we give credit and respect?” McConaughey continued. “The top two things are money and fame. And I said guys, just on a very base level, Trump has those, so I don’t know why we should be so surprised that he got elected.”

You can follow Douglas Braff on Twitter @Douglas_P_Braff.

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Economy

NY Lawmakers want to tax tech giants to get $500M to fund unemployment benefits for illegal migrants

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New York lawmakers are debating over a proposed Democratic initiative that would pave the way for a multibillion-dollar fund designed to provide unemployment benefits for illegal immigrants. Spearheaded by state Senator Jessica Ramos, a Queens Democrat, the proposal has ignited passionate discussions within the Senate Finance Committee, where it currently awaits further deliberation.

The Center Square reports the proposal would utilize a $500 million trust fund earmarked specifically to offer jobless benefits for individuals who find themselves ineligible for traditional unemployment payments and other public assistance programs. To finance this ambitious endeavor, proponents of the plan are advocating for the imposition of a novel tax targeting tech behemoths like Google and Amazon. This tax, aimed at digital advertising revenue, is projected to generate hundreds of millions of dollars to sustain the fund.

Ramos has alluded to her belief that migrants are a fundamental contribution to the state’s economy. Despite their authorization to work, payment of taxes, and active involvement in the labor force, undocumented immigrants face a glaring disparity—they are excluded from accessing vital safety nets like unemployment benefits if they lose their jobs.

In a social media post, Ramos cited the expiration of federal unemployment insurance for freelancers and the depletion of the Excluded Workers Fund. She argues vehemently for a safety net aligned with the evolving dynamics of the labor market, one that extends support to all workers, regardless of their immigration status.

The proposed fund, aptly named the Unemployment Bridge Program, outlines comprehensive eligibility criteria encompassing a spectrum of marginalized workers—from undocumented migrants to freelancers and individuals recently released from incarceration or immigrant detention. By establishing clear guidelines and procedures, the program endeavors to streamline the application process, ensuring equitable access to unemployment benefits for those in need.

The initiative comes in the wake of prolonged deliberations regarding jobless benefits for undocumented immigrants and nontraditional workers in New York. Amid the backdrop of the COVID-19 pandemic, the state previously allocated $2.1 billion to the Excluded Workers Fund, offering a lifeline to those excluded from conventional unemployment benefits.

Gov. Kathy Hochul’s proposed budget for fiscal year 2025 underscores a commitment to supporting asylum seekers, with significant allocations directed towards housing and legal assistance. The proposal has met with opposition from Republicans, who argue for prioritizing legal residents and taxpayers in the allocation of state resources. Senate Minority Leader Rob Ortt contends that limited resources should be reserved exclusively for those who have contributed to the state’s tax base.

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