Newsom said he will keep 100 guard members at the border to focus on narcotics search and seizures.
“On the issue of drugs we actually have seen some success with our current deployment," he said. "And that’s the issue that I want to tackle.”
However Newsom said he’ll only keep those troops at the border if the federal government continues to pay for them.
After a week of indecision, Brown reluctantly deployed the troops in April of last year after Trump asked governors of border states to help stop illegal immigration. However, Brown placed limits around the Guard's activities, refusing to let them help build the wall Trump has long sought. In his order, Brown limited the 400 National Guard troops to helping fight transnational crime, such as human trafficking and drug smuggling.
"It will not be a mission to round up women and children or detain people escaping violence and seeking a better life," Brown wrote in a letter to Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen and then-Defense Secretary James Mattis.
"And the California National Guard will not be enforcing federal immigration laws," he said, adding that the federal funding Trump promised "will allow the Guard to do what it does best: support operations targeting transnational criminal gangs, human traffickers and illegal firearm and drug smugglers along the border, the coast and throughout the state."
Despite those limitations, then-Lt. Gov. Gavin Newsom said at the time that he would not have complied with Trump's request had he been governor. Newsom's comments to the Sacramento Bee came during the 2018 campaign for governor.
Newsom's move today comes as Trump is threatening to declare a national emergency and use existing federal funds to build a border wall if Congress does not allocate the $5 billion he is demanding. Over the weekend, Newsom tweeted that Trump's border wall "would be a waste of money because it wouldn't work, and it would be nothing more than a monument of stupidity."