Interviews

Former Sen. Alan Simpson gives advice on relationships

What's the secret to lasting love?

 

This is a rush transcript from "Special Report," May 9, 2014. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.

NEIL CAVUTO, HOST: You know, I always knew there was a saucy side to this guy. Now we all know it, because when he`s not dancing to raise attention to the nation`s debt, former Wyoming Senator Alan Simpson is making headlines for his love advice.

It`s true.

Here to spell it out, the senator himself.

Very good to have you, my friend. Thanks for coming.

ALAN SIMPSON, FORMER CO-CHAIRMAN, NATIONAL COMMISSION ON FISCAL RESPONSIBILITY AND REFORM: Well, I`m right here, yes. Do you have something you want me to counsel you about or something? Anything I can do here.

CAVUTO: Well, actually, yes, Dr. Ruth, I do.

(LAUGHTER)

CAVUTO: How did this start with you...

SIMPSON: I`m not...

(CROSSTALK)

(LAUGHTER)

CAVUTO: How did this start with you offering love advice here? How did -- was it just, did someone just bring it up out of the blue or what happened?

SIMPSON: It was the nuttiest thing you can imagine. A guy wrote me I had never heard of and said would I write a letter to a young woman in New York who was a reporter and a journalist with NPR, and just say, would she please come to the ball in Cody, Wyoming, at the Buffalo Bills Center of the West?

I thought -- I said to Ann, my wife, I`m not going to do that. And she said, what have you got to lose? So I called this gal, and I said, you know, here I am. Your boyfriend, who you`re a little estranged from, has written me to ask if you would come to the Cody ball. He would love to have you there. And we will all dance around. And I said, Ann, I won`t do it. And Ann said, do it. I did it.

And we talked to the young lady, Anna Sale, a wonderful person. And at the end, my wife said to her, you know, just listen and don`t let your pride get in the way.

So, after 60 years of marriage and doing 1,500 divorces in my practice of law in Cody, Wyoming, I`m not the poor man`s Masters and Johnson, but I did give her all the counsel you could imagine.

(LAUGHTER)

CAVUTO: Well, and a "Love Connection" sequel host was born.

I love what you said, though, on intimacy, talking about sex. You said, "When you talk about sex, you think, well, there`s a couple horny people. That`s not the point. It`s called intimacy, scratch my back, give me a hug, just a hug."

Very commonsense stuff.

SIMPSON: Yes, and -- yes, well, that`s really true.

I mean, it is -- people, it`s like a red light over in the corner. And if you have intimacy, which is not the big S., then you think it`s going to lead right to that. That`s not necessarily the case. But the real issue is warmth, a hug, you know, a kick in the leg in the sack, and you know, I love you. That`s not a bad thing to do.

(LAUGHTER)

CAVUTO: But you get better, Senator.

You went on to say on relationships, "The secret is you both try to control each other, and you both fail, but it`s critical you fail."

Why do you say that?

SIMPSON: Well, that`s so important, because you really try to control each other, and you think the other one doesn`t know it. And so you become very cunning and manipulative.

And you will say, do you know so-and-so does this, meaning you, you oaf, do this?

(LAUGHTER)

SIMPSON: But I`m throwing it over to a third party.

And it becomes -- it`s destructive. Finally, one will say to the other, you`re not my authority. I didn`t marry you to tell me what to do. We have different time schedules. We`re different people. I love you, but you`re not controlling me.

And the other one says, you`re not controlling me, and you can get along a long time in a good marriage that way.

CAVUTO: A lot of people know you for your fights in Washington and raising hackles with the AARP crowd and all this, but one of the things that hit me most in a lot of this advice, and it`s so commonsense, listen more, talk less. Be kinder first.

When you`re -- you have been married for 60 years. What`s the secret to that?

SIMPSON: Well, listening and never walking out the door. When you have those arguments, and one of them starts for the door, you say, just a sec. And never lift a hand, never even in the back of your mind lift a hand, but just say to the other one, don`t leave this room. I`m not -- you need to hear me out. And that`s a critical thing.

And then, be tender to each other. I mean, I didn`t mean a whack in the fanny like that. I meant just like that.

(LAUGHTER)

CAVUTO: All right, so I got that one wrong. Do not whack in the fanny. Do not, not whack.

SIMPSON: No, pat, a light pat.

(CROSSTALK)

CAVUTO: All right, but you also, in good humor, touched on something I think is very true. A lot of couples when they have their first fight or disagreement, it`s over. They quit. That`s it. They`re not going to do it.

And I think this was something that was maybe born of the great generation, that fights didn`t mean the end of marriages. Today, we seem to want to cut loose at the first sign of trouble. So there are a lot of young couples today dealing with a lot of pressures, bills, in other words, this debt that was a big concern and is a big concern of yours. How do you counsel them to get through it and not let them overwhelm

SIMPSON: Well, for one thing, I met a couple the other day, they said we -- they had been married for 30 or 40 years. And she said, Henry and I have never had an argument. I said, well, then one of you is terribly diminished.

(LAUGHTER)

SIMPSON: You can`t possibly go through life -- you can`t possibly go through life like that. And you know that.

And, you know, there have been times -- I remember one of the kids -- we have three beautiful kids and in-laws and grand -- one of them was knocking on the door. Ann and I were in there having an argument, and Suzie (ph) said, are you -- are you going to get a divorce? We said, no, but get out of here. You were fighting with your brother this morning, doing the same thing. Well, get out. Hit it, you know?

CAVUTO: I like that.

SIMPSON: Well...

CAVUTO: Well, Senator, I tell you, a lot of great pearls of wisdom here. If Dr. Ruth ever looks shaky in her whole foundation here, I don`t know. I don`t know. There could be a new career for you.

SIMPSON: Well, don`t forget, Masters and Johnson got divorced.

CAVUTO: Well, we`re not going there. You keep pushing the Masters and Johnson thing. I wasn`t going there. You were.

SIMPSON: No, I went...

CAVUTO: All right.

SIMPSON: All I say, but I will tell you, you should see some of the e-mails I get.

CAVUTO: Oh, I bet.

SIMPSON: You old coot. You old -- you know, it`s because they think anyone 82 that should have rolled up their socks and hit the sack.

(LAUGHTER)

CAVUTO: Senator, it is a delight and a privilege. I don`t care whether you`re on the right, on the left, you get it, you get it. All right, thank you, Alan Simpson.

Remember that.

SIMPSON: Always a pleasure.

CAVUTO: OK, Guys, you know, as you -- and ladies -- it`s just -- just common sense. Love is just being decent.

(LAUGHTER)

CAVUTO: All right.

SIMPSON: It`s true.

Content and Programming Copyright 2014 Fox News Network, LLC. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. Copyright 2014 CQ-Roll Call, Inc. All materials herein are protected by United States copyright law and may not be reproduced, distributed, transmitted, displayed, published or broadcast without the prior written permission of CQ-Roll Call. You may not alter or remove any trademark, copyright or other notice from copies of the content.