Voter fraud is bad on all levels irrespective of how it is done. The story of Weaver, the Frat boy, is what I will say is an example of modern day electoral malpractice. What I see is, as the years progresses, there are new ways of committing these crimes. Compared to that of Adams County, Ohio. But I found it interesting how these practices in the county were normalized- even county officials looked on unconcerned- till the judge took action.
I also find it difficult to tell the lesser of these two evils. But one thing about that of Adams county was that it has some order attached to it. You go to the “market place,” and you bid- of course the highest bidder wins. But Louisville Kentucky’s “portable polling places” was done under the cover of darkness, and together with what happened when the results trickled in, could have ended in violence. For the purposes of this post, I will say “fraud that suppresses an opponent’s vote total” is pretty dangerous. As I mentioned, it could result in violence. The opponent and their following may try to rebel. And this is similar to what happened in the Weaver case. He tried to suppress his opponent’s total vote and ended in jail.
For the vote buying, you are not necessarily working directly to suppress the other candidate’s vote but rather cajole the voters to shade in your name when they go to the polls. This pretty much what most candidates do, even in a democracy. But the introduction of money, and other materials to influence them makes it wrong. But suppressing someone’s total vote seems more damaging and has thrown many countries in anarchy even in present day.