The bill passed by a vote of 220-204, mostly along party lines with little Republican support, but is expected to struggle in the Senate.
The latest move comes as scientists around the world investigate the potential therapeutic applications of such substances.
The New York senator, who once supported tough drug laws, said he changed his mind after seeing how legalization helped Colorado.
The War on Drugs has been an abject failure.
Decriminalization won't solve every problem. But it'll make it far safer for women.
Nearly 40 percent of Texans believe marijuana should be fully legalized and another 35 percent say it should be legalized for medicinal use, according to a recent poll.
The country's top human rights official previously argued that imprisoning "mildly abusive" men could leave families without an income.
Arrests for possession of small amounts of marijuana in New York City may soon become a thing of the past.
"Policy has failed to curtail demand or supply, or reduce the harm that drugs cause," medical leader says.
The U.N. Office on Drugs and Crime quickly said the document was neither finished nor formal.
Critics say the move opens to the door to pimps and sex trafficking.
The fight to legalize marijuana isn't just about young stoners wanting to get high.
Washington D.C. drops fine for possession of small amounts of marijuana to $25 in an effort to alleviate racial bias in arrests