After months of a statistical tie between Donnelly and Republican Richard Mourdock, the latest Howey/DePauw Battleground Poll found that Donnelly has taken an 11 point lead among likely Hoosier voters. Right now, 47 percent are for Donnelly while only 36 percent are for Mourdock.
abortion in cases of rape, which came during the final debate between the candidates in late October.
Despite the results of the poll, both candidates tried to remain focused on their campaigns Friday afternoon.
"We're just working non-stop," Donnelly said, during a stop in Lafayette.
"Four days to go,” Mourdock said during a stop in Indianapolis. “This is the fun part of the campaign."
But questions about the latest poll were certainly more fun for Donnelly to answer.
"I'm really humbled by the fact that the people of Indiana are paying such close attention," Donnelly said.
"The only poll we worry about is coming November 6,” Mourdock said. “The bigger number of the day, the bigger statistic of the day is, frankly, that unemployment has gone even higher."
Mourdock was referring to the newly released jobs report, which showed the national unemployment rate ticked up slightly to 7.9 percent. Donnelly said it’s also his number one priority.
"My focus has been on jobs and making the lives of everyday Hoosier families better," Donnelly said.
Though that may be, according to the Howey/DePauw poll, the big change in the race is clearly tied to Mourdock's controversial statement about abortion in cases of rape during the last debate.
Mourdock has since argued that his comments were twisted by Democrats, but he also faced criticism within the Republican party, and it appears likely voters are also taking notice.
The Howey/DePauw poll asked, "Are you aware or unaware of comments Richard Mourdock made during the final Senate debate regarding his views on abortion in the case of rape?"
Of those who responded, 87 percent said they were aware, while 13 percent said they were unaware.
The poll also asked, "Did what he had to say on this make you more or less likely to vote for Richard Mourdock?"
Of those who responded 6 percent said more likely, 40 percent said less likely and 54 percent said it made no difference.
"I think Hoosiers just want somebody who's not extreme and who's there just trying to make our country and state stronger," Donnelly said.
During his stop in Indianapolis, Mourdock declined to comment on the impact his statement appears to have had on voters.
Mourdock’s campaign managers released their own internal polls indicating that the race is actually still a virtual tie with Mourdock ahead by 2 points. When asked about the poll, Mourdock said he wasn’t focused on any of those numbers.
"Honestly, I don't look at the polls on a daily basis,” Mourdock said. “I know my staff does, but that's not what I worry about because I've been talking to Hoosiers. You know they are fearful of the future and that's almost un-American and I don't mean unpatriotic, but it's not in the traditional way Americans and Hoosiers look at things."