cantis and vs have a closer point of support so that makes them stiffer and stronger all else being equal, not to mention the clearance issues. Some people do use long reach side pulls.
32 is fine for 26" wheels, and doubtless will work on 700c. Strongly built or well tested wheels are probably more important. I don't know how to do the analysis, but reducing spokes is not a direct reduction in strength there are some multipliers. Like it is reduced in proportion to the reduced number of spokes, there is also the greater span. There can be spoke pattern issues. so you can get a reduction greater than by a factor of 36/32.
Another factor is the hub width if your wheel is narrower than 135 mm you may have some staying angle issues. Not saying it won't be perfectly fine, just pointing out where the variables may be.
Less spokes and it helps if your rim is stronger.