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Poll: Air Force preferred branch for loved one to join

June 2 (UPI) — While a majority of Americans hold all branches of the military in high regard, the Air Force is the branch most likely for people to recommend a loved one join, a survey released Friday shows.

According to the polling firm Gallup, 64 percent of people said they would recommend a loved one join the Air Force, the highest of the five branches. That is followed by the Navy at 53 percent, the Coast Guard at 48 percent, the Marines at 43 percent and the Army at 41 percent.

The results roughly correlate to the possibility a service member could be killed in action. Excluding the Coast Guard, the percentage of people recommending a branch of the military is the reverse order of the number of members killed in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Prior to April 24, there had been almost 5,000 deaths in the Army in Iraq and Afghanistan, just under 1,500 in the Marines, almost 250 in the Navy and less than 200 in the Air Force, according to a report from the Congressional Research Service.

The survey also found gender and political gaps among those who are most likely to join the military. Men are more likely than women to say they would serve in the armed forces as are Republican or Republican-leaning voters.

The poll was conducted from April 24 to May 2. It included 482 adults ages 25 or older and has a margin of error of 6 percentage points.

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