The show is broadcast from 9:00 AM ET to 10:00 AM ET, with a replay at 12:00 Noon ET.
The show premiered on January 18, 2009, originally with John King as host and aired from 9:00 AM ET to 1:00 PM ET (though only the 9:00 AM ET & 12:00 PM ET hours are simulcast on CNN International) and from 8:00 PM ET to 9:00 PM ET. It features news analysis and interviews with politicians, reporters, and newsmakers, as well as the "Magic Wall," an interactive touch screen map previously used by King to cover the 2008 presidential election. At four hours long, it was by far the longest of the Sunday talk shows. It was created as a merger between Reliable Sources and Late Edition with Wolf Blitzer; Reliable Sources continued unchanged as a one-hour "segment" of State of the Union. On February 11, 2009, CNN announced it had hired former Meet the Press producer Michelle Jaconi as the executive producer of the show.
On a January 31, 2010 broadcast, John King announced that senior political correspondent Candy Crowley would become the new anchor of the program, following King's move to take over Lou Dobbs's former timeslot. In the move, the show was cut back from four hours down to one, and the Reliable Sources "show within a show" was spun off once again as its own program.