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This Is How Much the Defense Department Spends in Minnesota

imageForEntry1 X6TIn his January 1961 farewell address to the nation, President Dwight Eisenhower acknowledged that “an immense military establishment and a large arms industry is new in the American experience.” At the time of the speech, the Cold War was in its second decade, and Europe had only just recovered from the devastation of the Second World War. Now, over half a century later, the geopolitical context has changed considerably, but the relevance of the former president’s observation has not.

The U.S. spent $877 billion on defense in fiscal 2022, more than the combined defense budgets of the next 10 countries with the highest military spending, including China, Russia, Ukraine, and the United Kingdom.

Defense contractors, as well as military and civilian defense personnel, are spread across the country, and every year, money from the federal government flows into each of the 50 states.

The Department of Defense spent $2.2 billion in Minnesota in 2021, the 13th lowest amount among states. About 68.5% of Pentagon spending in the state went to contractors, and 31.5% went to payroll for federal Defense Department employees and military personnel.

Annual defense spending in Minnesota is equal to about 0.5% of the state’s GDP and about $387 for every state resident.

All data in this story is from the report Defense Spending By State Fiscal Year 2021, published by the Department of Defense. States are ranked by total Defense Department spending on contracts and personnel payroll in fiscal 2021.

Rank State 2021 Defense Dept. spending in state DOD spending as a share of state GDP (%) DOD spending per capita
1 Virginia 62.7($B) 10.2 $7,259
2 California 57.4($B) 1.6 $1,463
3 Texas 47.3($B) 2.2 $1,601
4 New York 30.9($B) 1.6 $1,557
5 Florida 30.1($B) 2.3 $1,384
6 Maryland 26.3($B) 5.8 $4,258
7 Massachusetts 21.3($B) 3.2 $3,057
8 Connecticut 19.3($B) 6.2 $5,347
9 Washington 19.1($B) 2.7 $2,470
10 Pennsylvania 16.5($B) 1.9 $1,272
11 Alabama 15.7($B) 6.1 $3,123
12 Georgia 14.9($B) 2.1 $1,378
13 Arizona 14.6($B) 3.4 $2,013
14 Kentucky 13.8($B) 5.7 $3,068
15 Colorado 12.4($B) 2.8 $2,138
16 Missouri 12.2($B) 3.3 $1,979
17 North Carolina 11.7($B) 1.7 $1,113
18 Ohio 9.9($B) 1.3 $844
19 Illinois 9.5($B) 1.0 $749
20 New Jersey 9.3($B) 1.3 $1,002
21 Hawaii 7.9($B) 8.3 $5,465
22 Indiana 7.2($B) 1.6 $1,059
23 Michigan 6.5($B) 1.1 $649
24 Oklahoma 6.3($B) 2.9 $1,582
25 Utah 6.3($B) 2.7 $1,877
26 South Carolina 6.1($B) 2.2 $1,179
27 Mississippi 5.6($B) 4.3 $1,911
28 Wisconsin 5.1($B) 1.3 $857
29 Kansas 3.7($B) 1.9 $1,263
30 Alaska 3.6($B) 6.2 $4,916
31 Louisiana 3.6($B) 1.3 $768
32 New Mexico 3.3($B) 2.9 $1,547
33 Tennessee 3.2($B) 0.7 $462
34 Maine 3.2($B) 4.1 $2,348
35 Nevada 3.1($B) 1.5 $974
36 Iowa 2.6($B) 1.1 $805
37 New Hampshire 2.3($B) 2.3 $1,671
38 Minnesota 2.2($B) 0.5 $387
39 Arkansas 1.9($B) 1.3 $639
40 Rhode Island 1.7($B) 2.4 $1,533
41 Nebraska 1.7($B) 1.1 $844
42 Oregon 1.4($B) 0.5 $324
43 Delaware 950.4($M) 1.1 $947
44 North Dakota 902.5($M) 1.4 $1,165
45 West Virginia 885.2($M) 1.0 $496
46 Idaho 676.4($M) 0.7 $356
47 Montana 647.3($M) 1.0 $586
48 South Dakota 643.3($M) 1.0 $718
49 Vermont 545.7($M) 1.4 $845
50 Wyoming 475.9($M) 1.1 $822
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