In August presidential candidate Rick Perry, who previously served in the Air Force, suggested that a truly dedicated president of the U.S. would have served in the military. Although it is evident with Perry’s current low poll numbers that military service alone is not enough, it does beg the question of how much an emphasis voters place on a candidate’s past military career.

While for much of American history service in the military was regarded as a sort of prerequisite for the presidency, that importance has somewhat waned in the past few years. This is evident by the lack-of-military experience presidential candidates have possessed in the last two election cycles.

Our current president, Obama, has never served in the military.

Of the GOP candidates, only Ron Paul and Perry have served in the Armed Forces. This is significant, especially since the GOP is typically the party that campaigns in favor of pro-military issues.

With the two front runners being Rick Santorum and Mitt Romney, neither of whom have military experience, this is likely to be the first presidential race in 70 years where neither party nominee has ever served in the military, according to Politico.

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