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States with the most military engagement

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Public Domain

States with the most military engagement

Since President Donald Trump was elected, America has been nothing short of a nation divided. While some of the topics of discussion revolve around immigration and gun control, there is a seemingly constant debate about funding the United States Armed Forces. According to a recent Gallup poll, 45 percent of Americans think we should be spending more on national defense, 22 percent think we should be spending less and 33 percent either have no opinion or believe us to be spending about the right amount.

This same poll revealed that 68 percent of Americans think it’s important that the United States ranks first in the world militarily, which perhaps speaks to why 1,281,900 active service members comprise the world’s third-largest army. While this massive body of soldiers is made up of volunteers from all 50 states and the District of Columbia, there exists a great disparity when it comes to where these brave men and women come from.

Using data from WalletHub, the American Community Survey and the Department of Defense, Stacker listed the states with the most active military engagement. The states are ranked according to WalletHub’s calculated rankings, whose algorithms are explained in precise detail here.

Read on to see how many active service members are from your state.

RELATED: Looking back at 100 years of military history

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Public Domain

#50. New York

Military engagement rank: 50
Estimated civilian population 18+ years: 15,448,079
Estimated active-duty military personnel: 20,588 (0.13% of civilian population)
Estimated reserve forces military personnel: 28,386 (0.18% of civilian population)
Estimated number of veterans: 789,553 (5.10% of civilian population)

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The U.S. Army // Flickr

#49. New Jersey

Military engagement rank: 49
Estimated civilian population 18+ years: 6,897,536
Estimated active-duty military personnel: 7,669 (0.11% of civilian population)
Estimated reserve forces military personnel: 16,973 (0.25% of civilian population)
Estimated number of veterans: 371,383 (5.40% of civilian population)

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Massachusetts National Guard // Flickr

#48. Massachusetts

Military engagement rank: 48
Estimated civilian population 18+ years: 5,346,964
Estimated active-duty military personnel: 3,573 (0.07% of civilian population)
Estimated reserve forces military personnel: 15,059 (0.28% of civilian population)
Estimated number of veterans: 340,288 (6.40% of civilian population)

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The National Guard // Wikicommons

#47. Connecticut

Military engagement rank: 47
Estimated civilian population 18+ years: 2,806,551
Estimated active-duty military personnel: 4,641 (0.17% of civilian population)
Estimated reserve forces military personnel: 6,613 (0.24% of civilian population)
Estimated number of veterans: 188,759 (6.70% of civilian population)

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Minnesota National Guard—The National Guard // Flickr

#46. Minnesota

Military engagement rank: 46
Estimated civilian population 18+ years: 4,166,542
Estimated active-duty military personnel: 597 (0.01% of civilian population)
Estimated reserve forces military personnel: 18,541 (0.44% of civilian population)
Estimated number of veterans: 331,516 (8.00% of civilian population)

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Public Domain

#45. Pennsylvania

Military engagement rank: 45
Estimated civilian population 18+ years: 10,074,933
Estimated active-duty military personnel: 2,580 (0.03% of civilian population)
Estimated reserve forces military personnel: 30,244 (0.30% of civilian population)
Estimated number of veterans: 840,258 (8.30% of civilian population)

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Public Domain

#44. Illinois

Military engagement rank: 44
Estimated civilian population 18+ years: 9,843,811
Estimated active-duty military personnel: 20,567 (0.21% of civilian population)
Estimated reserve forces military personnel: 24,399 (0.25% of civilian population)
Estimated number of veterans: 643,460 (6.50% of civilian population)

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US Army Africa // Wikicommons

#43. Michigan

Military engagement rank: 43
Estimated civilian population 18+ years: 7,678,119
Estimated active-duty military personnel: 2,088 (0.03% of civilian population)
Estimated reserve forces military personnel: 14,934 (0.19% of civilian population)
Estimated number of veterans: 602,630 (7.80% of civilian population)

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Rhode Island National Guard—The National Guard // Flickr

#42. Rhode Island

Military engagement rank: 42
Estimated civilian population 18+ years: 838,882
Estimated active-duty military personnel: 3,371 (0.40% of civilian population)
Estimated reserve forces military personnel: 4,273 (0.51% of civilian population)
Estimated number of veterans: 62,890 (7.50% of civilian population)

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Wisconsin Department of Military Affairs

#41. Wisconsin

Military engagement rank: 41
Estimated civilian population 18+ years: 4,450,879
Estimated active-duty military personnel: 976 (0.02% of civilian population)
Estimated reserve forces military personnel: 14,000 (0.31% of civilian population)
Estimated number of veterans: 367,227 (8.30% of civilian population)

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Vermont Army National Guard Soldiers—Public Domain

#40. Vermont

Military engagement rank: 40
Estimated civilian population 18+ years: 504,152
Estimated active-duty military personnel: 168 (0.03% of civilian population)
Estimated reserve forces military personnel: 3,707 (0.74% of civilian population)
Estimated number of veterans: 42,484 (8.40% of civilian population)

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The National Guard // Flickr

#39. Iowa

Military engagement rank: 39
Estimated civilian population 18+ years: 2,377,378
Estimated active-duty military personnel: 248 (0.01% of civilian population)
Estimated reserve forces military personnel: 10,775 (0.45% of civilian population)
Estimated number of veterans: 203,277 (8.60% of civilian population)

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Public Domain

#38. California

Military engagement rank: 38
Estimated civilian population 18+ years: 29,383,567
Estimated active-duty military personnel: 128,373 (0.44% of civilian population)
Estimated reserve forces military personnel: 56,167 (0.19% of civilian population)
Estimated number of veterans: 1,720,635 (5.90% of civilian population)

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U.S. Air Force Photo

#37. Utah

Military engagement rank: 37
Estimated civilian population 18+ years: 2,039,152
Estimated active-duty military personnel: 3,979 (0.20% of civilian population)
Estimated reserve forces military personnel: 11,735 (0.58% of civilian population)
Estimated number of veterans: 129,748 (6.40% of civilian population)

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Public Domain

#36. West Virginia

Military engagement rank: 36
Estimated civilian population 18+ years: 1,465,391
Estimated active-duty military personnel: 197 (0.01% of civilian population)
Estimated reserve forces military personnel: 7,882 (0.54% of civilian population)
Estimated number of veterans: 145,171 (9.90% of civilian population)

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Public Domain

#35. Indiana

Military engagement rank: 35
Estimated civilian population 18+ years: 5,004,742
Estimated active-duty military personnel: 963 (0.02% of civilian population)
Estimated reserve forces military personnel: 18,863 (0.38% of civilian population)
Estimated number of veterans: 410,750 (8.20% of civilian population)

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Public Domain

#34. Ohio

Military engagement rank: 34
Estimated civilian population 18+ years: 8,938,977
Estimated active-duty military personnel: 6,793 (0.08% of civilian population)
Estimated reserve forces military personnel: 27,208 (0.30% of civilian population)
Estimated number of veterans: 779,187 (8.70% of civilian population)

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Public Domain

#33. North Dakota

Military engagement rank: 33
Estimated civilian population 18+ years: 562,348
Estimated active-duty military personnel: 6,583 (1.17% of civilian population)
Estimated reserve forces military personnel: 4,212 (0.75% of civilian population)
Estimated number of veterans: 49,560 (8.80% of civilian population)

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Oregon National Guard // Flickr

#32. Oregon

Military engagement rank: 32
Estimated civilian population 18+ years: 3,118,352
Estimated active-duty military personnel: 1,572 (0.05% of civilian population)
Estimated reserve forces military personnel: 9,432 (0.30% of civilian population)
Estimated number of veterans: 301,330 (9.70% of civilian population)

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Public Domain

#31. Louisiana

Military engagement rank: 31
Estimated civilian population 18+ years: 3,516,581
Estimated active-duty military personnel: 13,122 (0.37% of civilian population)
Estimated reserve forces military personnel: 16,994 (0.48% of civilian population)
Estimated number of veterans: 267,938 (7.60% of civilian population)

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Public Domain

#30. New Hampshire

Military engagement rank: 30
Estimated civilian population 18+ years: 1,058,849
Estimated active-duty military personnel: 757 (0.07% of civilian population)
Estimated reserve forces military personnel: 4,097 (0.39% of civilian population)
Estimated number of veterans: 103,282 (9.80% of civilian population)

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Public Domain

#29. Kentucky

Military engagement rank: 29
Estimated civilian population 18+ years: 3,383,064
Estimated active-duty military personnel: 31,418 (0.93% of civilian population)
Estimated reserve forces military personnel: 12,568 (0.37% of civilian population)
Estimated number of veterans: 289,837 (8.60% of civilian population)

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Public Domain

#28. Maine

Military engagement rank: 28
Estimated civilian population 18+ years: 1,068,652
Estimated active-duty military personnel: 811 (0.08% of civilian population)
Estimated reserve forces military personnel: 3,804 (0.36% of civilian population)
Estimated number of veterans: 114,000 (10.70% of civilian population)

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The U.S. Army // Flickr

#27. Tennessee

Military engagement rank: 27
Estimated civilian population 18+ years: 5,035,151
Estimated active-duty military personnel: 2,095 (0.04% of civilian population)
Estimated reserve forces military personnel: 18,206 (0.36% of civilian population)
Estimated number of veterans: 450,899 (9.00% of civilian population)

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Public Domain

#26. Maryland

Military engagement rank: 26
Estimated civilian population 18+ years: 4,584,055
Estimated active-duty military personnel: 28,888 (0.63% of civilian population)
Estimated reserve forces military personnel: 18,596 (0.41% of civilian population)
Estimated number of veterans: 392,771 (8.60% of civilian population)

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Public Domain

#25. Nebraska

Military engagement rank: 25
Estimated civilian population 18+ years: 1,408,818
Estimated active-duty military personnel: 5,849 (0.42% of civilian population)
Estimated reserve forces military personnel: 6,296 (0.45% of civilian population)
Estimated number of veterans: 127,340 (9.00% of civilian population)

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Public Domain

#24. Arkansas

Military engagement rank: 24
Estimated civilian population 18+ years: 2,256,793
Estimated active-duty military personnel: 3,190 (0.14% of civilian population)
Estimated reserve forces military personnel: 10,275 (0.46% of civilian population)
Estimated number of veterans: 213,949 (9.50% of civilian population)

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Public Domain

#23. Delaware

Military engagement rank: 23
Estimated civilian population 18+ years: 727,643
Estimated active-duty military personnel: 3,196 (0.44% of civilian population)
Estimated reserve forces military personnel: 4,972 (0.68% of civilian population)
Estimated number of veterans: 68,777 (9.50% of civilian population)

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The National Guard // Flickr

#22. Missouri

Military engagement rank: 22
Estimated civilian population 18+ years: 4,644,895
Estimated active-duty military personnel: 17,072 (0.37% of civilian population)
Estimated reserve forces military personnel: 18,467 (0.40% of civilian population)
Estimated number of veterans: 438,100 (9.40% of civilian population)

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Public Domain

#21. South Dakota

Military engagement rank: 21
Estimated civilian population 18+ years: 638,836
Estimated active-duty military personnel: 2,809 (0.44% of civilian population)
Estimated reserve forces military personnel: 4,555 (0.71% of civilian population)
Estimated number of veterans: 62,661 (9.80% of civilian population)

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Public Domain

#20. New Mexico

Military engagement rank: 20
Estimated civilian population 18+ years: 1,571,927
Estimated active-duty military personnel: 11,485 (0.73% of civilian population)
Estimated reserve forces military personnel: 5,133 (0.33% of civilian population)
Estimated number of veterans: 157,413 (10.00% of civilian population)

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Public Domain

#19. Nevada

Military engagement rank: 19
Estimated civilian population 18+ years: 2,166,609
Estimated active-duty military personnel: 10,322 (0.48% of civilian population)
Estimated reserve forces military personnel: 7,648 (0.35% of civilian population)
Estimated number of veterans: 216,275 (10.00% of civilian population)

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Public Domain

#18. Florida

Military engagement rank: 18
Estimated civilian population 18+ years: 15,812,068
Estimated active-duty military personnel: 55,862 (0.35% of civilian population)
Estimated reserve forces military personnel: 36,387 (0.23% of civilian population)
Estimated number of veterans: 1,480,133 (9.40% of civilian population)

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Public Domain

#17. Montana

Military engagement rank: 17
Estimated civilian population 18+ years: 794,896
Estimated active-duty military personnel: 3,208 (0.40% of civilian population)
Estimated reserve forces military personnel: 4,434 (0.56% of civilian population)
Estimated number of veterans: 87,936 (11.10% of civilian population)

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Public Domain

#16. Kansas

Military engagement rank: 16
Estimated civilian population 18+ years: 2,159,618
Estimated active-duty military personnel: 21,604 (1.00% of civilian population)
Estimated reserve forces military personnel: 9,664 (0.45% of civilian population)
Estimated number of veterans: 192,340 (8.90% of civilian population)

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Public Domain

#15. Mississippi

Military engagement rank: 15
Estimated civilian population 18+ years: 2,246,662
Estimated active-duty military personnel: 11,554 (0.51% of civilian population)
Estimated reserve forces military personnel: 16,200 (0.72% of civilian population)
Estimated number of veterans: 180,251 (8.00% of civilian population)

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Public Domain

#14. Washington

Military engagement rank: 14
Estimated civilian population 18+ years: 5,421,260
Estimated active-duty military personnel: 45,343 (0.84% of civilian population)
Estimated reserve forces military personnel: 18,723 (0.35% of civilian population)
Estimated number of veterans: 552,863 (10.20% of civilian population)

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Public Domain

#13. Arizona

Military engagement rank: 13
Estimated civilian population 18+ years: 5,091,593
Estimated active-duty military personnel: 18,297 (0.36% of civilian population)
Estimated reserve forces military personnel: 14,968 (0.29% of civilian population)
Estimated number of veterans: 497,337 (9.80% of civilian population)

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Public Domain

#12. Texas

Military engagement rank: 12
Estimated civilian population 18+ years: 19,731,218
Estimated active-duty military personnel: 110,913 (0.56% of civilian population)
Estimated reserve forces military personnel: 53,321 (0.27% of civilian population)
Estimated number of veterans: 1,513,294 (7.70% of civilian population)

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Public Domain

#11. Colorado

Military engagement rank: 11
Estimated civilian population 18+ years: 4,080,009
Estimated active-duty military personnel: 34,460 (0.84% of civilian population)
Estimated reserve forces military personnel: 13,176 (0.32% of civilian population)
Estimated number of veterans: 383,699 (9.40% of civilian population)

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Public Domain

#10. Alabama

Military engagement rank: 10
Estimated civilian population 18+ years: 3,723,825
Estimated active-duty military personnel: 8,750 (0.23% of civilian population)
Estimated reserve forces military personnel: 18,802 (0.50% of civilian population)
Estimated number of veterans: 351,461 (9.40% of civilian population)

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Public Domain

#9. Wyoming

Military engagement rank: 9
Estimated civilian population 18+ years: 441,797
Estimated active-duty military personnel: 3,102 (0.70% of civilian population)
Estimated reserve forces military personnel: 2,908 (0.66% of civilian population)
Estimated number of veterans: 47,390 (10.70% of civilian population)

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Public Domain

#8. Idaho

Military engagement rank: 8
Estimated civilian population 18+ years: 1,200,704
Estimated active-duty military personnel: 3,367 (0.28% of civilian population)
Estimated reserve forces military personnel: 5,434 (0.45% of civilian population)
Estimated number of veterans: 118,313 (9.90% of civilian population)

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Public Domain

#7. Oklahoma

Military engagement rank: 7
Estimated civilian population 18+ years: 2,905,409
Estimated active-duty military personnel: 19,802 (0.68% of civilian population)
Estimated reserve forces military personnel: 13,031 (0.45% of civilian population)
Estimated number of veterans: 286,926 (9.90% of civilian population)

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The National Guard // Flickr

#6. North Carolina

Military engagement rank: 6
Estimated civilian population 18+ years: 7,570,164
Estimated active-duty military personnel: 91,175 (1.20% of civilian population)
Estimated reserve forces military personnel: 21,776 (0.29% of civilian population)
Estimated number of veterans: 683,221 (9.00% of civilian population)

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Mgirardi // Wikicommons

#5. Virginia

Military engagement rank: 5
Estimated civilian population 18+ years: 6,333,433
Estimated active-duty military personnel: 89,303 (1.41% of civilian population)
Estimated reserve forces military personnel: 25,977 (0.41% of civilian population)
Estimated number of veterans: 696,685 (11.00% of civilian population)

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Public Domain

#4. Georgia

Military engagement rank: 4
Estimated civilian population 18+ years: 7,555,386
Estimated active-duty military personnel: 61,322 (0.81% of civilian population)
Estimated reserve forces military personnel: 26,767 (0.35% of civilian population)
Estimated number of veterans: 662,333 (8.80% of civilian population)

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Public Domain

#3. South Carolina

Military engagement rank: 3
Estimated civilian population 18+ years: 3,718,496
Estimated active-duty military personnel: 37,507 (1.01% of civilian population)
Estimated reserve forces military personnel: 17,862 (0.48% of civilian population)
Estimated number of veterans: 373,890 (10.10% of civilian population)

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Public Domain

#2. Hawaii

Military engagement rank: 2
Estimated civilian population 18+ years: 1,066,715
Estimated active-duty military personnel: 36,620 (3.43% of civilian population)
Estimated reserve forces military personnel: 9,402 (0.88% of civilian population)
Estimated number of veterans: 108,022 (10.10% of civilian population)

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Public Domain

#1. Alaska

Military engagement rank: 1
Estimated civilian population 18+ years: 532,857
Estimated active-duty military personnel: 17,302 (3.25% of civilian population)
Estimated reserve forces military personnel: 4,593 (0.86% of civilian population)
Estimated number of veterans: 68,145 (12.80% of civilian population)

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