Internet Explorer 8 (I no longer even look at IE 7) seems to not be able to see the padding on an anchor tag within a ul > li > a structure. Using jQuery I have a hover event on the li, however it only works on the bottom 1px of the li.
I tried adding position:relative and zoom:1, as some have suggested but that doesn’t work. I then just tried to put a background in the anchor tag to see if IE even recognizes that the anchor tag has padding. It did recognize the padding and once the background was in the hover also worked. Turns out IE needs a background set? I found another person who had this problem and the solution was to set the background to a transparent image of 1×1 px.