Matthew McConaughey says country on cusp of bipartisan gun reform after Uvalde: ‘This time is different’

Matthew McConaughey says country on cusp of bipartisan gun reform after Uvalde: 'This time is different' thumbnail

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Matthew McConaughey doubled down on his calls for gun reform in an exclusive interview on “Special Report” Tuesday after delivering an emotional address challenging gun ownership laws at the White House where he met privately with President Biden.

The 52-year-old actor and native of Uvalde, Texas, told Fox News anchor Bret Baier that his personal connection to the town where Salvador Ramos shot and killed 19 students and two teachers at Robb Elementary last month compelled him to join the conversation on gun safety reform. McConaughey stated on “Special Report” that he is not an entertainer who decided to support an open cause. “This happened on my – I got called. It took place in the same town that I was born, so it became very personal. “

MATTHEW MCCONAUGHEY PLEADS FOR RESPONSIBLE GUN OWNERSHIP IN WHITE HOUSE PRESS BRIEFING

After meeting with President Joe Biden, Actor Matthew McConaughey talks to reporters during the daily news conference in the Brady Press Briefing Room at the White House on June 07, 2022 in Washington, DC. 

After meeting with President Joe Biden, Actor Matthew McConaughey talks to reporters during the daily news conference in the Brady Press Briefing Room at the White House on June 07, 2022 in Washington, DC.
(Win McNamee)

McConaughey met with the president and lawmakers on Capitol Hill shortly after he published an op-ed for the Austin American-Statesman, in which he called for heightened “gun responsibility” and tighter gun laws to avoid future tragedies like the one that crippled his hometown. The “Fools Gold” actor called for lawmakers to require a background check on all gun purchases, increase the buying age to 21, implement red flag laws nationally and institute a national waiting period.

McConaughey said he had discussions with “responsible” gun owners in Texas, many of whom voiced support for the restrictions he outlined. McConaughey stated that all of these things are reasonable and that Republicans should not be arguing for stricter gun laws to eliminate mass shootings.

But he stated, “We’re going to not fix people.” It’s a lifelong job, both for us and our children and their children. There are things we can do that will make it more difficult for the bad guys to get guns. “

Camila Alves McConaughey, wife of actor Matthew McConaughey, holds a pair of shoes worn by one of the victims of the school shooting in Uvalde, Texas, during the daily news conference in the Brady Press Briefing Room at the White House on June 07, 2022 in Washington, DC. 

Camila Alves McConaughey, wife of actor Matthew McConaughey, holds a pair of shoes worn by one of the victims of the school shooting in Uvalde, Texas, during the daily news conference in the Brady Press Briefing Room at the White House on June 07, 2022 in Washington, DC.
(Win McNamee)

KIM KARDASHIAN CALLS FOR FATHER OF YOUNG GIRL KILLED IN UVALDE SHOOTING BE TEMPORARILY RELEASED FROM PRISON

The actor said he believes the country has reached a turning point, telling Baier that bipartisan gun reform seems possible as lawmakers appear more motivated than ever to find solutions for the American people. The consensus…that I hear is that this time is different. That there is more momentum. McConaughey stated that the left side has people who are willing to say “We may not want the whole loaf but we’ll take a slice.”

“This is a new thing that’s happening right now. This is a novel and special time happening right now where actually something may change instead of just talking about and nothing changes again for another 30 years. “

A banner hangs at a memorial outside Robb Elementary School on Friday, June 3.

A banner is displayed at the Robb Elementary School memorial on Friday, June 3.
(AP/Eric Gay)

After hearing of the mass devastation in his hometown, McConaughey said he drove home and
“hugged the kids, held onto them a little longer and tighter than usual.” He drove with his wife Camila Alves, their three children, to Uvalde on the next morning.

MATTHEW MCCONAUGHEY VISITS UVALDE TEXAS, PAYS RESPECTS TO SCHOOL SHOOTING VICTIMS

“The main thing we got out of it was that every single family that lost a loved one or a child said I just want some way for the loss of my loved one’s life to matter,” he recalled. He described the interactions with grieving families at Robb Elementary to be “penetrating,” and told Baier that he is a “different person now.” “

McConaughey stated that he meant it through his body and soul. “[I] was able receive the pain and anguish of others and received some hugs they couldn’t let go. They were enough to make me a completely different man. My wife is a completely different woman now. My children are, I believe, different now. We hope that, especially for my children this will lead to a new way of living. “

Kymber Guzman, 8, signs a memorial for the victims of a mass shooting in Uvalde, Texas. 

Kymber Guzman (8 years old) signs a memorial to the victims of a mass shooting at Uvalde in Texas.
(Wally Skalij/Los Angeles Times via Getty Images)

Baier said many of his Washington colleagues considered McConaughey’s plea earlier Tuesday as one of the “best, most authentic, most complete presentations delivered from the White House podium in many administrations,” questioning whether the actor plans to pursue political office in the future.

McConaughey, who once considered running for Texas governor, put any speculation to rest. He said that he was not running for political office.

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Fox News’ Tracy Wright contributed to this report.

Yael Halon is a reporter for Fox News Digital. Story tips can be sent to yael.halon@fox.com.

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