I guarantee it's just lots of big talk and just more studies. These people have very little understanding how much it will cost, where to start and what it will take to run an efficient and financially viable electric utility during a technological disruptive period. As these politicians spew their "beliefs" - and that's just what it is, rhetoric not based in critical analyses or an understanding of utility operations or regulation - they create an unstable regulatory environment and business climate which has the potential to send up red flags and wreak havoc on HECO's ability to finance its operations with or without the merger.
During this time of transformation a well-functioning electric utility requires insightful leadership, nimble and flexible strategic planning and strong analytical capacity. A particular ownership model does not guarantee any of these characteristics or qualities required for an electric utility to successfully navigate an energy transformation and may, in fact, hinder it with decisions based on politics and the need to weigh competing interests rather than fact, technology, economics and best practices.
This is why these politicians and the Governor need to let the Hawaii Public Utilities Commission, as the regulator, and the Consumer Advocate, whose statutory duty is to represent the interest of Hawaii's ratepayers, to do their jobs in evaluating the application and all the questions and responses to come to an evidence based decision that is in the public interest.