The representative sharply criticized the death penalty, calling it “state-sanctioned murder.”
Opponents of the new law decried it, saying the death penalty should be banned outright given its racist history.
The state has 37 people on death row. Three are out of appeals and in line to be executed.
“We can’t give out the ultimate punishment without being 100 percent sure that we’re right,” Gov. Ralph Northam said.
Since 1976, Virginia has executed 113 individuals, second only to Texas.
More people are serving death-by-incarceration sentences today than the total number of people in prison in the 1970s.
Representatives Cori Bush and Ayanna Pressley are leading an effort urging President Biden to end capital punishment.
In the immediate term, Biden can place a moratorium on federal executions for at least the next decade.
The Trump administration has trampled over an array of barriers, both legal and practical, according to court records.
President Donald Trump late Wednesday issued another wave of pardons for his wealthy political and personal allies.