Former President George W. Bush says Matthew McConaughey could have a shot at being Texas's next governor, if he has "the principles" to tune out his critics.

"I don't know, he seems to be a charming guy," Bush said with a laugh, when asked if the "True Detective" star would make a good governor of the Lone Star State in a Thursday interview on "The Hugh Hewitt Show."

The 51-year-old performer has been floating a potential gubernatorial run while promoting his memoir, "Greenlights." McConaughey said in an interview last month that a bid is a "true consideration." A poll published last week found that more Texas voters would back McConaughey over Gov. Greg Abbott (R), who's up for reelection next year.

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"I met him one time," Bush, himself a former Texas governor, told Hewitt of McConaughey. "I'll tell you one thing: He's charismatic. Now whether or not he can put up with all the noise, all the rubber chicken circus, you know all the stuff that goes on," the 43rd president added.

"The criticism can be pretty harsh, Hugh, and the question would be does he have a set of principles firm enough to not worry about what the critics say?" Bush said.

The ex-commander in chief recalled a conversation with former Texas Rangers pitcher Nolan Ryan, who he referred to as his friend. Ryan, Bush recounted, told him he was considering running for Texas's agricultural commissioner.

"I said, 'Nolan, do you like it when the sports columnists criticize you?' " Bush said.

"He said, 'I don't like it,' " Bush continued.

"I said, 'Well then you're not going to like running for agricultural commissioner.' "