A Democrat, responsible for signing bills passed by the California State Legislature, is controversially deciding whether to release thousands of prisoners early due to the deadly Asian disease spreading through the prison system.

Gov. Gavin Newsom could allow 17,600 convicted criminals back onto the streets before they finish serving their prison sentences due to strict social distancing requirements for the CCP (Chinese Communist Party) Virus pandemic.

The Golden State’s Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation (CDCR) confirmed that more than 8,000 inmates have had their release dates expedited already, and there is potential for more.

“Overall, we have reduced the total incarcerated population by more than 18,300 since March as a result of suspension of county jail intake, the expedited releases,” a CDCR representative said, according to Fox News.

Californians for Safety and Justice (CSJ) revealed the measure was necessary after the Newsom administration was blamed for causing more than 1,300 inmates to contract new infections. Prisoners were transferred from the outbreak-affected California Institute for Men in Chino to San Quentin State Prison, 19 miles north of downtown San Francisco leading to overcrowding.

“It is ironic that California has a moratorium on the death penalty, yet people are being killed in prisons by way of COVID [CCP Virus],” CSJ executive director Jay Jordan said. “There is a moral imperative for bolder action to reduce overcrowding in our prisons. Too many people are locked up for too long by a bloated system that spreads poor health across California communities up and down the state.”

The remarks came after the governor agreed to release 3,500 inmates convicted of nonviolent and relatively minor offenses and had less than 60 days to go before being released.

California’s poorly designed and managed state prison system often suffers from overcrowding problems as the number of inmates keeps exceeding the maximum capacity of multiple facilities.

According to Fox News, the inability to maintain social distancing has been a critical factor in the disease’s rapid spread, infecting nearly 2,500 and killing 31 inmates.

“California must release people who are unnecessarily incarcerated and transform our safety priorities, so the core needs of communities that allow them to be safe are met and the number of people sent to prison in the first place is reduced,” Jordan said. “The decision by Gov. Newsom to ramp up safe prison releases is a credit to the advocacy of people and organizations throughout the state who have demanded clear action to protect public health and safety.”