MISHAWAKA—Indiana Congressman Joe Donnelly talked to local workers at AM General, after news broke the U.S. Army will not order any more Humvees from the Mishawaka plant after March. Earlier this week, the Army said it is shifting more of its spending toward vehicles designed to better protect soldiers from roadside bombs and other insurgent attacks. The Democrat does not want the news to dishearten workers. He told employees heading into the plant that there are enough orders to keep them on the job through this year, and at least part of next year. He said there is communication with the Army to see how AM General can best serve military needs. As for safety, Donnelly said the Humvee has served the military well, and he hopes the army keeps these vehicles in the mix. “They have done a terrific job for our soldiers for years and years,” said Donnelly. “The Humvee was asked to do things it was never built for. It began as almost a transport vehicle and when the Army had nothing else to put in the field, AM General up-armored these things.” He also said AM General is in the running to produce the next generation of military vehicles. The Joint Light Tactical Vehicle (JLTV) is designed to be lighter and stronger than any other vehicle. He said the plant’s chances of getting the contract are outstanding because it is experienced in producing light tactical vehicles. “We're one of 3 companies left to get this potential contract, and it's going to go for years and years, and will begin production in 2013. What we're trying to do is have a seamless transition from the Humvee into the JLTV when we hopefully win that contract,” said Donnelly. Donnelly said he has already talked to his colleagues about how important AM General is. He said he is certain the company can produce a vehicle that will keep U.S. soldiers safe, which is of top priority. Protecting jobs of Mishawaka residents is also his concern. “Everybody you saw going through that gate is a mom or dad or husband or wife and they're trying to make ends meet and AM General provides fabulous jobs and is a great employer and we're trying to make sure they can stay strong and we have jobs for the long term,” he said. Congress still has to approve the Army's budget plan, but Donnelly said he is confident efforts to secure long-term production at the plant will be successful. Donnelly faces a challenge in his re-election bid this year. Indiana Representative Jackie Walorski and Jack Jordan will each run in the Republican primary for a chance to face Donnelly in November.