If you load a full page plugin handle file type, and go to the location bar, and type in it, when you move the mouse down over the plugin page (even with click to focus), the location bar stops getting key presses. It will get key presses again if you move the mouse pointer over any part of the browser provided UI. If you load an HTML page, and click in the location bar, the key strokes continue to go to the location bar when you move the mouse over the web page, until you click on the web page. This is what I would expect the plugin case to do.
I'm betting the problem is that X is delivering the key events to the plugin widget and the plugin is simply never passing them on to us.... so we have no idea a key was even pressed.
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Still a problem. I am not convinced by that explaination, since all plugins seem to show the same behavior. Maybe the browser created window that is passed to the plugins is the problem window?
marking NEW although it might not be fixable