Few politicians have studied United States immigration and immigration policies as comprehensively as the late civil-rights icon, the first African American congresswoman to come from the Deep South, and chairwoman of President Clinton’s Commission on Immigration Reform, U.S. Representative Barbara Jordan (TX). The bi-partisan commission produced guiding principles for American immigration policies as well as specific recommendations – all but one recommendation was unanimous.

This week Parsing Immigration Policy features Eric Ruark, director of research at NumbersUSA, an immigration advocacy organization that has become the unofficial steward of the Jordan Commission’s reports and research. Ruark discusses the Jordan Commission’s report, how the Commission defined the purpose of immigration laws and the key recommendations, including a reduction in legal immigration and ending illegal immigration. Jordan advocated for a system that was in the best interest of the American people and protected the most vulnerable U.S. workers as opposed to employers.