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Idaho Senator Separates From His Wife

June 3, 1987 GMT

BOISE, Idaho (AP) _ Sen. Steve Symms confirmed Wednesday that he has separated from his wife of 27 years and is living in an apartment near his Senate office.

″All there is to say is that there’s a lot of pressure in this job, a lot of hard work,″ the Idaho Republican said in an interview from Washington, D.C. ″We have drifted apart.″

Symms, 49, declined to specify the reasons for his decision to leave his wife, Frances, and move from the family home in Alexandria, Va.

″The only thing I’m saying is that I’m separated from my wife,″ he said. ″I’m like a lot of other people. I’m having a few domestic problems. ... There isn’t anything I can say that will ever help.″

The senator said the separation occurred about two months ago, but he said he has not been trying to hide it.

″It’s nothing I really want to talk about,″ he said. ″I have a very amicable relationship with Fran, and I have the highest respect for her.″

″I hope this will be resolved soon, but I don’t know how it will be resolved,″ said Symms, who won a second term last fall in a hard-fought campaign against former Democratic Gov. John Evans. ″I see her often and that’s why we’re talking.″

Mrs. Symms, 49, declined comment on the separation when contacted at her Virginia home, where she is living with her youngest daughter, Katy, a junior in high school. The Symmses have three other grown children: Dan, Susan and Amy.

The senator said no formal action in seeking a legal separation or divorce was planned since there was no disagreement with his wife over financial support.