Both states backed Republican George Bush in 2004, but they're up for grabs this year, with New Mexico looking especially promising for Democrats.
The Illinois senator was off the campaign trail for a day and a half so he could spend time with his grandmother, who is gravely ill. Obama says he doesn't know if she will live to see Election Day.
Obama spent about seven hours Thursday and Friday with Madelyn Dunham, whom he calls Toot
- a version of the Hawaiian word tutu, or grandparent. His sister, Maya Soetoro-Ng, joined them.
"We're all praying ... but one of the things I want to make sure of is I had a chance to sit down with her and to talk to her," Obama said in an interview with ABC. "She's still alert and she's still got all her faculties. And I want to make sure that I don't miss that opportunity."
While Obama focused on family, he wasn't able to leave the campaign behind entirely.
He traveled the streets of Honolulu, where he was born and spent much of his childhood, in a motorcade of police cars and Secret Service vehicles. A pool of reporters tagged along. Supporters waited in hopes of spotting him for a few seconds.
Even an attempt to take a quiet walk through his old neighborhood involved guards and a crowd of reporters and cameras, attracting attention from passers-by. Obama, clad in jeans, a black shirt and sandals, quickly gave up on the idea and returned to his grandmother's apartment building in an SUV.
A steady stream of flowers for Dunham arrived throughout the day, and dozens of people gathered, holding signs and T-shirts.
Anita Manzana was among them. She said Obama's decision to spend time with his grandmother shows how humble he is.
"I think family values, to him, are very important," said Manzana, an administrative assistant for a state agency. "He doesn't forget where he came from. His grandmother means a lot to him."
Obama was born in Hawaii, where his Kansas-born mother and Kenyan father met as college students.