Published: Wed, March 13, 2019
Worldwide | By Jermaine Blake

Gov. Gavin Newsom to Suspend Death Penalty in California - Trump Fumes

Gov. Gavin Newsom to Suspend Death Penalty in California - Trump Fumes

In the USA, the death penalty is inevitably plagued with arbitrariness, racial disparities, and error; 164 people, including four from California, have been released from death row since 1973 after being later found innocent.

Among the groups most supportive of the issue are white evangelical Protestants; more than 7 in 10 support the use of the death penalty.

Newsom has always been a vocal opponent of the death penalty, stating the practice discriminates against people of color, mentally ill people and poor people, and that it has put to death those wrongfully convicted of crimes. "The intentional killing of another person is wrong". "We're poised to potentially oversee the execution of more prisoners than any other state in modern history", Newsom said in an interview with the LA Times before issuing the moratorium.

It will not end the death penalty in the state, but will suspend it for the duration of Newsom's term. A new execution protocol is under review, but Newsom's order will withdraw it.

But Newsom's action will anger death penalty proponents.

There hasn't been an execution in California since 2006, amid a years-long legal battle over the state's drug cocktail. "The Governor's decision to grant a blanket reprieve to prevent executions is an abuse of power and a slap in the face of the families of murder victims", he added.

But her stance was derirded by those who support the death penalty, with some mocking her for weighing in on such a weighty topic.

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Newsom defended his right as governor to put the moratorium on the death penalty - citing statistics that there are a number of people on death row who are actually innocent of the crimes for which they've been convicted.

The move to halt executions was also panned by President Trump, who has been a harsh critic of Newsom's ever since the governor took office earlier this year.

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.

A California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation (CDCR) officer opens the door to San Quentin State Prison's death row on August 15, 2016 in San Quentin, California. Since 2014, there have been 134 executions in the United States, according to the Death Penalty Information Center.

Age and natural causes seem to have been a more effective death penalty in California: 79 death row habitants have died of natural causes since 1978, another 26 killed themselves.

U.S. President Donald Trump quickly tweeted his displeasure at Newsom's decision regarding the "737 stone cold killers".

ASSOCIATED PRESSCalifornia Governor Gavin Newsom. "Racial bias and unfairness run deep throughout the justice system but especially when it comes to the death penalty".

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