Newsom cited discrimination against minorities and the poor and his Catholic background as the reasons why he "will not oversee the execution of any individual".
On Tuesday, news broke that Newsom was going to announce a "moratorium" on capital punishment, temporarily halting the death penalty for the 737 inmates on death row in California, according to the New York Times. "It has provided no public safety benefit or value as a deterrent". It has wasted billions of taxpayer dollars. There is absolutely no evidence that the death penalty makes Californians safer, and it is both incredibly costly and burdensome.
"The people have voted for the death penalty eleven times since 1972, including three times in the last seven years", Scheidegger said in a statement. Levine's district includes San Quentin State Prison.
An execution chamber in a file photo.
The last execution in California was when the state put Clarence Ray Allen, 76, to death on January 17, 2006. No executions have been carried out since. The Democrat's order will immediately close the execution chamber at San Quentin State Prison and withdraw California's lethal injection protocol.
The governor is meant to sign the new order later on Wednesday.
California voters have, more than once, affirmed their desire for a death penalty.
Brown also opposed the death penalty, but his administration moved to restart executions after voters acted in 2016 to allow the use of a single lethal injection and speed up appeals. The California Supreme Court rejected part of that measure, while keeping most of it intact.
The moratorium on the death penalty will last as long as Newsom holds office.
Across the country, 18 states and Washington DC have abolished the death penalty and others have issued suspensions. The foundation is in favor of the death penalty and helped draft the 2016 resolution to fast track executions.
California Democratic gubernatorial candidate Gavin Newsom speaks after being elected governor of the state during an election night party in Los Angeles, California, U.S. November 6, 2018.
Newsom has always been a vocal critic of capital punishment.
But as the state's demographics have changed, so too have California's politics.
Seventy-nine condemned California inmates have died of natural causes since the state reinstated capital punishment in 1978.
Kim Kardashian is speaking out to voice her support for ending the death penalty. As for Newsom, highlighting the issue could elevate his national profile, but could also ignite a firestorm of protest by crime victim advocates, President Trump and others.