Al and Tipper Gore to Separate After 40 Years of Marriage

September 27, 2013 Updated Jun 1, 2010 at 3:14 PM EDT

By WKBW Internet

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Al and Tipper Gore to Separate After 40 Years of Marriage

September 27, 2013 Updated Jun 1, 2010 at 3:14 PM EDT

WASHINGTON, D.C. (WKBW/ABC) -- ABC News is reporting that former Vice President Al Gore and his wife, Tipper Gore, are separating after 40 years of marriage.

In an email to friends today entitled "Email from Al and Tipper Gore," the couple said: "We are announcing today that after a great deal of thought and discussion, we have decided to separate. "This is very much a mutual and mutually supportive decision that we have made together following a process of long and careful consideration. We ask for respect for our privacy and that of our family, and we do not intend to comment further."

The e-mail, which was first reported by Politico, was confirmed for ABC News by Gore spokesperson Kalee Kreider.

Kreider would not go beyond the text of the e-mail in explaining the reason for the separation.

This spring the Gores reportedly purchased an $8.9 million home in tony Montecito, Calif ., home to notable residents like Oprah Winfrey , actors Michael Douglas and Christopher Lloyd, and golfer Fred Couples.

The Gores just celebrated their 40th wedding anniversary two weeks ago. They were married at the National Cathedral in Washington on May 19, 1970. They have four children.

The couple first met as high school students in Washington, D.C., at a party after the senior prom. Tipper told the Washington Post in 2000 that her first impression was "Oh, boy! He's good looking."

Read the full story at ABCNews.com here.