California's congressional Democrats challenged House district lines proposed by a state Supreme Court panel and asked a federal court to intervene. The Democrats, whose control of the state's new 52-seat House delegation would be threatened by the pending reapportionment plan, argued that the proposed districts were too unequal in population and would hurt minorities in the Los Angeles area. The Democrats had previously asked a three-judge federal panel to take House reapportionment from the state's high court, which took it over after a deadlock between the Legislature and Gov. Pete Wilson. The Democrats then put their suit on hold to await the redistricting proposal of three retired judges appointed by the state court. That proposal, unveiled last week, is widely viewed as favorable to Republicans, while increasing the chances of minority representation in the Legislature and Congress.