The ticket is still open because I reverted my changes, thus we don't have an agreed fix yet. Note that according to the spec a table must have a tbody element and no direct tr children.
IMHO accessibility is the strongest point against an invisble row, it would destroy the semantics of the table.
w3c probably noticed their mistake in making a tr inside tbody mandatory and fixed their decision in HTML5. Firefox' border-bug can easily be bypassed with an additional wrapping div. That's what the CSS designers do all the time anyway.
That's my take on this issue, I don't approve your patch. You may convince another dev to follow your arguments.
Thanks for your dedication on this issue.